India's ECGC may permit Sri Lanka to repay debt over 12 years

(MINT, New Delhi, 6 July 2023) India plans to allow Sri Lanka up to 12 years to repay its debt to help ease the financial burden on the island-nation, India’s Export Credit Guarantee Corporation (ECGC) Ltd’s chairman-cum-managing director M.Senthilnathan said. Sri Lanka, facing its worst economic and political crisis in over seven decades, owes $7.1 billion to bilateral creditors— $3 billion owed to China, $2.4 billion to the Paris Club and $1.6 billion to India. Senthilnathan added that the National Export Insurance Account, managed by the ECGC, has received close to ₹4,500 crore worth of claims from exporters facing default in countries such as Sri Lanka, Zambia, Suriname and Ghana which faced extreme economic hardships after covid-19 and the Ukraine war. China has so far not joined the common platform of negotiators on Sri Lanka’s debt restructuring, though it has joined as an observer. In response to Sri Lanka’s request for long-term relief from major creditors like India, Japan, and China, the Chinese Exim Bank has agreed to grant Sri Lanka a two-year moratorium. It said it would support the country’s efforts to secure a $2.9 billion loan from the International Monetary Fund according to a report by Reuters.