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During the last two weeks, the Federal Ministry for Economic Affairs and Energy, which represents the interests of the Federal Government in the Paris Club, has been negotiating the key points of a debt moratorium for more than 70 of the poorest countries in the world. The moratorium amounts to several billion euros and has now been adopted by the countries of the G20.

Federal Minister for Economic Affairs and Energy Peter Altmaier said: “In times of global crises in particular, stronger countries must support weaker ones and we all must stand together. It is therefore good news that the 20 richest countries have decided to suspend debt repayments for the world's poorest countries, as negotiated by the Paris Club.”

According to the agreement reached, those states that are involved in the World Bank’s International Development Association (IDA) programme will not have to service their debts to sovereign creditors (countries) from 1 May 2020 until the end of 2020. The deferral extends to interest and repayment. If necessary, the moratorium can also be extended beyond the end of 2020. The moratorium has a total volume of several billion euros, and private lenders are also invited to join in the initiative.

The Paris Club, along with the World Bank and the IMF, is a central authority concerned with tackling government payment crises. It is an informal conference of government representatives from the G20 countries and others. It meets regularly at the French Ministry for the Economy and Finance in Paris. Institutional observers of the Club include the World Bank, the IMF, the Organisation for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD), the European Union and the United Nations Conference on Trade and Development (UNCTAD). Germany is a founding member of the Paris Club.

Information on the work of the German Federal Government in the Paris Club is available here (in German).