Union of Comoros: the AfDB Group wipes out US$ 24 m In arrears

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Tunis, 18 December 2007 – The Boards of Directors of the African Development Bank and African Development Fund approved in Tunis on Tuesday an arrears clearance amounting to 15.21 million Units of Account* (approximately US$ 24 million or 8.1 billion Comorian Francs) in favor of the Union of Comoros. This clearance accounts for 69 % of the Comoros arrears to the African Development Bank Group.

The arrears clearance falls within the post-conflict country (PCC) assistance programme, launched by the AfDB Group in July 2004. The Boards of Directors of the ADB and ADF has determined that the country meets the conditions of eligibility for an arrears settlement programme. framework The guidelines for the framework require that proposals for assistance submitted include: sustainable normalization of relations with the AfDB Group; positive net transfers in favor of the PCC; case-by-case approach in close collaboration with other international finance institutions and the donor community; and coherence with key AfDB Group financial practices and policies.

After a lengthy reconciliation process, Comoros is gradually returning to peace. The International Community has clearly signaled its interest in re-engaging with Comoros; this will require agreement across the donor community concerning arrears.

The settlement of the arrears to the AfDB Group will enable Comoros to secure substantial debt reduction within the frameworks of two major initiatives: the Heavily Indebted Poor Countries Initiative and the Multilateral Debt Relief Initiative. As a result of the arrears clearance, the AfDB Group will lift sanctions imposed on Comoros.

* 1 Unit of Account = USD 1,57188 = KMF 535,281 as at 31 October 2007

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