Today the Norwegian Government agreed to cancel USD 35 million of Liberia’s debt to Norway. This constitutes 90 per cent of Liberia’s debt to Norway.
“I am glad we have agreed to cancel most of Liberia’s debt to Norway. It is important to support the positive developments that have taken place since the election of President Johnson-Sirleaf four years ago,” said Minister of the Environment and International Development Erik Solheim.
This, together with other debt cancellation, will make Liberia’s debt manageable. The debt relief package for Liberia is part of the Heavily Indebted Poor Countries Initiative, an international initiative to reduce the debts of the poorest and most indebted countries. The debt relief package is based on a multilateral framework agreement concluded in the Paris Club, a forum for creditor countries, in April this year.
“Poor post-conflict countries are in urgent need of help to reduce their debt. Norway gives a particular attention to these countries. Countries that are not qualified for help from the Heavily Indebted Poor Countries Initiative are often countries that have recently been affected by war. Liberia is an example for them,” said Mr. Solheim.
In accordance with the Norwegian Debt Relief Strategy, the debt cancellation for Liberia was carried out without taking any funds from the development budget. The cancellation does not therefore affect the development assistance provided to other poor countries.
Liberia’s remaining debt to Norway will be cancelled when the country reaches the completion point defined under the Indebted Poor.