June 18, 2024

Controller Of Budget raises alarm over loans given to Kenya

3 min read
Controller Of Budget raises alarm over loans given to Kenya

The Controller of Budget Margaret Nyakang’o now wants loans received from multilateral agencies to be audited

The Controller of Budget Margaret Nyakang’o now wants loans received from multilateral agencies to be audited.

In the National Government Budget Implementation Review Report released on Thursday, February 22, Nyakang’o said that the annual interest paid for concessional financing has averaged 14.5 percent which is expensive.

She also noted that the loans have a low impact in terms of economic development.

“These concessional loans are usually given by multi-lateral agencies such as the IMF and the World Bank under serious austerity measures such as increases in taxation.

“My office recommends an audit of these loans and the projects they support to ascertain the effectiveness of these loans. Our analysis has revealed that the average interest paid on concessional loans has averaged 14.5% for many years, which is not cheap by any standards,” said Nyakang’o.

The Controller of Budget also poked holes in the government’s announcement that Kenya will settle the Eurobond in trenches to avoid one bullet payment as has been the norm.

“Other loans will be maturing at the same time and not necessarily the Euro bond loan only. These other repayments, which include domestic debt, will still pose a heavy burden on the cashflows shortly,” Nyakang’o noted.

In addition, the Controller of Budget raised concerns about Kenya’s debt portfolio revealing that it exceeds the required limit.

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The CoB noted that the debt surpassed the set limit of 55 per cent of the GDP as prescribed in the Public Finance Management Act.

According to the report, Kenya’s outstanding debt stood at Ksh11.14 trillion as of December 31, 2023.

The Ksh11.14 trillion comprised Ksh6.09 trillion, which is owed to external lenders and Ksh5.5 trillion for the domestic debt portfolio.

She further waded into the monetary policy noting that the Central Bank of Kenya (CBK) should revisit the interest rate adjustment at the earliest opportunity.

“The MPC should be convened to reduce the domestic interest rates. Our current problems as a country in matters of inflation are driven by the supply side while the consumption on the side of the household is not driven largely through debt,” the report added.

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