By Jennifer Browning
Under the enhanced Heavily-Indebted Poor Countries (HIPC) Initiative, United States Ambassador Kenneth H. Merten and Haitian Minister of the Economy and Finance Daniel Dorsainvil today signed a bilateral debt relief agreement.
In recognition of Haiti’s successful completion of the HIPC, under the terms of this agreement, the United States will erase $12.6 million of bilateral debt, eliminating 100 percent of the Haitian government’s outstanding debt to the United States.
Haiti met the requirements to complete the HIPC initiative this summer by successfully implementing of economic and financial reforms, thus qualifying Haiti for over $1 billion of debt relief from multilateral and bilateral creditors.
In July, the Paris Club creditors, including Canada, France, Italy, and the United States, negotiated with Haiti to cancel approximately $62.7 million in official debt. Haiti’s Paris Club creditors intend to provide $152 million in additional debt cancellation beyond the requirements of the initiative.
This debt forgiveness will allow Haiti to invest more in the social needs of the country.