Sierra Leone’s Minister of Finance, Sheku Ahmed Fantamadi Bangura, in a presentation at the ongoing 78th session of United Nations General Assembly meetings in New York on financing for development, has called on the international community and development partners to collaborate and look for innovative means to respond to the challenges of debt in low-income countries.
Minister Bangura stated that debt servicing is closing the limited fiscal space of these countries, limiting response to the needs of vulnerable groups in society and implementing pro-poor programs like safety nets.
The Minister of Finance for Sierra Leone stated that the country has been taking debt to respond to crises and emergencies like Ebola, COVID-19, and global economic challenges.
While he called for conversations on debt service relief, suspension initiatives, and innovative financing schemes through development partners to undertake bankable projects in low-income countries, Minister Bangura commits to ensuring prudent debt management by targeting more concessional financing and improving domestic revenue mobilisation efforts.
The Minister of Finance is part of the Sierra Leone delegation to the United States of America along with the Chief Minister, Financial Secretary, Matthew Dingie and other senior government officials who accompanied President Dr. Julius Maada Bio to this year’s UNGA and other bilateral meetings with the International Monetary Fund (IMF), the Millennium Challenge Corporation (MCC) and other development partners.