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Hakainde Hichilema Hits the Ground Running as he Pledges to Uncover Zambia’s True Debt Burden

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Newly elected president of Zambia, friend of the markets and economist,  Hakainde Hichilema’s government is trying to uncover the full extent of its obligations as it prepares to seek a bailout from the International Monetary Fund and begin talks to revamp the African nation’s debt.

Hichilema’s  last month’s landslide victory placed him in control of an economy with a “bigger hole” than he envisaged, having last year become Africa’s first pandemic-era sovereign defaulter. Years of government budget blowouts fueled by over-borrowing left the state with at least $12.7 billion in external debt, according to the most recent official figure.

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