Belgium cancels Congo debt as elections loom
6 June 2006, BRUSSELS — Belgium will write off a EUR 94 million debt owed by its former colony the Democratic Republic of Congo in exchange for a supervising role in reforms to the Congolese central bank.
6 June 2006
BRUSSELS — Belgium will write off a EUR 94 million debt owed by its former colony the Democratic Republic of Congo in exchange for a supervising role in reforms to the Congolese central bank.
Belgian Finance Minister Didier Reynders said on the last day of his visit to the Congo on Monday that the money was a loan the Belgian National Bank made to the Central African nation in 1972.
Reynders said Belgium had to perform an act of charity as national elections because loom and because debt is not part of the international debt the Congo has accrued subject to conditions laid down by the International Monetary Fund.
After meeting with his Congolese colleague Marco Banguli, the Liberal MR minister said Belgium will also investigate what role it could play in improving the education of Congolese tax officials.
Meanwhile, the chairman of the Congolese electoral commission, Abt Malu Malu, has confirmed that the first round of the presidential elections will take place on 30 July. "The date is fixed and will not change," he said.
Malu Malu also denied rumours that the election process in the Congo would not occur proceed according to correct democratic procedures.
[Copyright Expatica News 2006]
Subject: Belgian news