Moscow has forgiven $23 billion in African debt – Putin

Lazy eyes listen


President Vladimir Putin stated on Friday at a plenary session of the Russia-Africa summit in St. Petersburg that the Russian government has written off more than $20 billion in debt due by African states in the past.

He also stated that Moscow would increase its contributions to the continent’s growth.

“The total amount of debt written off by Russia for African countries amounts to $23 billion dollars, with another $90 million to be allocated for the same purposes,” Putin said, referring to historical trade and financial relations between Moscow and Africa.

On Thursday, the president said that Russia would deliver free grain to African countries in need. Burkina Faso, Zimbabwe, Mali, Somalia, the Central African Republic, and Eritrea will each receive 25,000 to 50,000 tons of grain, with Moscow covering the transportation costs.

In March, Russian President Vladimir Putin emphasized the expansion of mutual trade between Russia and African countries, saying it might open up new chances for the process of establishing the African Continental Free Trade Agreement (AfCFTA).

Launched in 2021, the AfCFTA is planned to grow into a continental market with a total GDP of more than $3 trillion, positioning Africa as a multipolar world leader. Putin believes that Russia should establish links with AfCFTA both through the Eurasian Economic Union and bilaterally.