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Kenya's domestic debt hits 18 bln USD

16 June 2016, 10:36

Nairobi - Kenya's domestic debt has swelled to 18 billion U.S. dollars, indicating a surge in borrowing in the past weeks by the government, official data from the Central Bank showed Tuesday.

The debt stood at 16.9 billion dollars end of May and swelled by 568 million dollars to stand at over 17.5 billion dollars last week on account of increased sale of Treasury bonds.

During the period, the value of Treasury bonds increased by about 410 million dollars from 10.8 million dollars.

The bonds that the government has sold during the period include a 300 million dollars infrastructure bond, which attracted bids worth 80.4 billion dollars.

Treasury, however, accepted bids worth over 390 million dollars at an interest rate of 13.3 percent.

Last week, the government again went to the domestic market to raise another 300 million dollars for budgetary support.

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The money was to be raised through two Treasury bonds, namely a two-year re-opened security with a 12 percent interest rate and a 15-year bond at 11 percent yield.

On the other hand, the government has been selling weekly Treasury bills of 91, 182 and 364 days, all which are valued at 160 million dollars.

Treasury collected over 180 million dollars from the securities last week, 20 million dollars than it had sought. The value of debt held in the bills has swelled by over 13 million dollars in the past two weeks, accounting for 33 percent of Kenya's domestic debt.

Last week, the East African nation unveiled its 23 billion dollars budget, the largest ever, in Parliament, against a revenue collection target of 15 billion dollars.

The 800 million dollars deficit will be plugged by borrowing from both domestic and external sources.

Kenya domestic debt currently stands at 29 percent of the Gross Domestic Product (GDP) while external debt comprises of 51 percent of the total debt or 31 percent of the GDP.

Overall, East African nation's public debt stood at about 33 billion dollars or 60 percent of the country's GDP last month.

- Xinhua


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