Tonight there is bad news for Governments finances. Moody’s, the international rating agency, today announced that eleven countries including Belize face a substantial risk of defaulting on debt and declaring bankruptcy. Accompanying Belize is Argentina, Greece, Ukraine, Egypt, Cuba, Cyprus, Jamaica, Ecuador, Venezuela and Pakistan.
Moody’s credit rating for Belize was Caa2 with a stable outlook. The country without a doubt has suffered from debt problems for years, first defaulting nearly a decade ago, after which it consolidated all of its international debts into a single bond.
Government then missed a payment on this “superbond” in August 2012, leading to a 2013 debt restructuring that resulted in a longer repayment time, a haircut to the bond’s overall value, and smaller payments for bondholders. Following the restructuring, Moody’s upgraded Belize’s credit rating to Caa2 with a stable outlook and it has remained that way. The IMF projects that Belize’s total gross debt will reach 80.4% of GDP by the end of 2014.
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