On 18th November 2020, Fitch Ratings has downgraded Zambia’s Long- and Short-Term Foreign-Currency Issuer Default Ratings (IDR) to Restricted Default ‘RD’ from ‘C’.
The downgrade follows the end of the 30-day grace period for the coupon payment on the USD1 billion Eurobond last issued in 2015 that matures in 2024.
The coupon payment was due on 14 October 2020, and the grace period ended on 13 November.
The government of Zambia had requested bondholders to grant a deferral of interest payments until April 2021, but it was rejected.
An International Monetary Fund (IMF) delegation is scheduled to travel to Zambia early next month to discuss a possible bailout package.