China was the top country that advanced bilateral loans to Kenya in 2017, latest data from the Treasury shows.
Point of view
The external public debt stock increased by Sh42.5 billion ($4,253.0 million) from Sh185 billion ($18,504.5 million) on December 2016 to Sh227 billion ($22,757.4 million) by end of December last year.
China gave Kenya Sh520 billion ($5,202.37 million) for the period ending December 2017.
The Treasury data shows that China loans to the Kenyan government have been growing since December 2015 when it advanced the government a total of Sh273 billion ($2,734.72 million).
Other major lenders are Japan Sh82.48 billion ($824.81 million), France Sh62.25 billion ($622.52 million), Germany Sh32.46 billion ($324.67 million), and Belgium Sh10 billion ($100.06 million).
In total, foreign countries advanced a total of Sh758 billion ($7.58 billion) to the government during the period under review.
The Chinese loan surpassed the International Development Association and International Fund for Agricultural Development facilities for the first time.
The multilateral institutions advanced the government Sh518 billion ($5,181.44 million) for the period ending December 2017.
“The external public debt stock increased by Sh42.5 billion ($4,253.0 million) from Sh185 billion ($18,504.5 million) on December 2016 to Sh227 billion ($22,757.4 million) by end of December last year,” the Treasury report indicated.
The debt stock comprised bilateral debt (33.3 per cent), multilateral debt (35.8 per cent), commercial banks’ (30.1 per cent), and suppliers’ credit (0.7 per cent).
This increase was attributed to disbursements made during the period.
Other multilateral institutions that advanced huge amounts to the government included Asian Development Bank, International Monetary Fund and other institutions.
Collectively, multilateral institutions advanced Sh815 billion ($8.15 billion).