World Bank sees more countries in 'deep debt distress' this year

FILE PHOTO: World Bank President David Malpass attends the “1+6” Roundtable meeting at the Diaoyutai state guesthouse in Beijing, China November 21, 2019. REUTERS/Florence Lo

WASHINGTON (Reuters) – The chief of the World Bank on Tuesday said Chad and several other countries were already in deep debt distress and more were expected to join their ranks this year, given the severity of the global recession triggered by the COVID-19 pandemic.

World Bank Group President David Malpass said the African oil producer Chad may need a deep reduction in the net present value of its debt, and creditors would need to work with the country to find a viable solution to its debt overhang.

“For some countries, it’s a red alert,” Malpass told reporters during a teleconference. “We need to find ways to adjust the debt burden, so that the burden of debt on people in poorer countries can be reduced dramatically.”

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