Ver Angola


Vera Daves rejects new debt due to costs

The Minister of Finance reaffirmed that Angola will not resort to external financing markets, due to costs and “everything that is happening in the international scenario”.

: Ampe Rogério/Lusa
Ampe Rogério/Lusa  

"All emerging economies that want to finance themselves in international markets, finance themselves at a cost that would only add burden to those we already have and then, whether our children, grandchildren, great-grandchildren, would hate this team that is here and we cannot do that," said Vera Daves de Sousa, speaking on Friday at a meeting with journalists in Luanda.

According to the minister, new indebtedness would bring new debt service to the country that would be "unbearable in the short, medium and long term".

"And we cannot fall into that trap. That's why we are managing. We have to reduce expenses as much as possible, we have to ask for help from public managers to be assertive in what is the definition of priorities", she said.

The holder of the Finance portfolio stressed that the recommendation has been "to persuade people to spend better", that is, to improve the quality of expenses.

"It's good that this is clear. The Ministry of Finance is not a semi-God, we are the Treasury, we pay invoices, we verify that the expenditure is well constituted. There are more than two thousand budgetary units. Are there things that pass us by? Pass! We should have seen better, signal us, help us", appealed the minister, stressing that the mission "is, with everyone's help, to mobilize revenue and pay expenses, to persuade people to spend better".

Vera Daves de Sousa detailed the aspects that placed the country in the current scenario of financial and economic difficulties, stressing that the ideal for these cases "is to constitute a treasury reserve, which will allow to cushion revenue shortfalls in the future".

"But we always have a surprise that always swallows up that savings. When we tried, covid-19 came, then we tried again, the price dropped, then we tried again, oil production is below a million barrels, well, it seems bad luck," she commented.

According to the minister, it is necessary to continue fighting for economic diversification, "because only by having different sources of income" can there be more stability in the money that flows to the national treasury.

"Then, conciliate all this with discipline, avoid changing the rules in the middle of the game", she stressed, stressing that the budget units present an annual plan for public procurement at the beginning of the year and a budget at the beginning of the year and must maintain them.

Vera Daves de Sousa also said that a production of 1.18 million barrels of oil was expected, but lower production was recorded, in the order of 900,000 barrels, in at least two months, with a price that "was in certain parts of the year below 75 dollars a barrel".

"The third effect: the interest rates in the international markets that we would like to stop rising, but they do not stop", pointed out the minister, stressing that Angola has contracted external financing at a variable interest rate.

Also contributing to the current situation were bonds issued locally and abroad "in which, if there are changes such as those in the exchange rate, the cost of servicing that debt increases" and it is necessary "to use more kwanzas to pay that debt".

"All of that together, considering a year where we have to start servicing debt again, because all the debt suspension agreements are over, what happens happens," she said.

"We have resumed servicing debt with Chinese creditors, two of these loans collateralized with oil [use oil as collateral], in a context where production is lower," she added.

The official stressed that if the country does not supply the barrels that are foreseen in the contract, the financier claims non-compliance.

"If we default, send us a love letter, which all the other financiers know about and everyone declares that Angola has defaulted, if that triggers everyone starts with legal proceedings on top of us, the markets close, nobody lends us more, it's the apocalypse," she said.


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