Tue, 21 Jan 2020 11:17 - Updated Tue, 21 Jan 2020 11:25
U.K: Angola clears debt on external services and goods acquisitions
London - The Angolan minister of State and Economic Coordination, Manuel Nunes Júnior, said last Monday in London that Angola has already managed to resolve all the overdue transfers for the payment of goods and services abroad.
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Angolan minister of State and Economic Coordination, Manuel Nunes Júnior.
Photo: Gaspar dos Santos
Without mentioning the amount paid by the government in debts abroad, the official said that this has been achieved in the last two years (2018 and 2019), disclosing also the information that now it is possible for investors to make transfers of their gains at the right time.
"In two years, very important steps have been taken in terms of Angola's exchange rate policy, which today we can say that all the problems relating to behind payments that were due to be made abroad are now resolved", he clarified.
According to Manuel Nunes Júnior, who spoke to the press on the sidelines of the opening ceremony of the United Kingdom-Africa Investment Summit, where he is representing President João Lourenço, all the problems of repatriation of dividends in Angola are solved.
"Today, importers, those who need resources to make their production in Angola, taking into account the reforms introduced in the foreign exchange market, are able, at the current price of foreign exchanges, to buy such currencies when they need them," he declared.
According to the official, the Angolan government has adjusted the market in such a way that the currencies started to have their true value, which constitutes an important sign for the investor.
From his point of view, it is important that investors interested in travelling to Angola can have this guarantee that foreign resources are there, at the market price.
He went on to explain that in a short period of time important reforms have taken place and brought about greater fluidity, thus one can say that the country is about to reach market balance.
Based on different 2017 reports, he recalled that that year's gap between the exchange rate in the official and informal markets was around 150 percent and today it is 23 percent against the dollar and 18 percent against the Euro.
''Therefore, it’s a drastic and significant reduction and on this aspect we are working on the right path" he stressed.
Manuel Nunes Júnior recalled that, in relation to the fiscal balance, the country had between 2016 and 2017 and even before, in 2015, deficits in the General State Budget (OGE).
As of 2018, he said, the country started to have surpluses, that is, the OGE of Angola started to have revenues that are higher than the expenses.
"In 2018 we had a surplus, 2019 also, in the order of 1.2 percent of GDP. For 2020 we will also have a surplus", he disclosed.
He considers this to be extremely important for the country, which had negative balances and now has positive balances, leaving it less in need of debt.
The minister promised that the Angolan authorities will do everything from now on to have less need for debt, hoping that in a few years’ time Angolans will have the debt problem fully under control.
Inflation Downward Trend
Governmental data indicate that inflation in Angola, in 2019, decreased compared to 2018, reaching 17.1 percent, against 18 percent in the previous year and 42 percent in 2017. The trend is “markedly decreasing”.
"All of these indicators we are going to send to investors, to demonstrate that we are doing a serious work of macro-economic stabilization that will lead us to a serious growth of Angola’s productive base", said the Angolan official.
Manuel Nunes Júnior said that the country is experiencing a new governance paradigm to promote the installation of "a properly structured market economy", which is no longer dependent on oil.
In the past two decades, Angola's economy has been heavily dependent on crude oil and vulnerable to external shocks, a paradigm that the government wants to change quickly, looking to other sectors as sources of state revenue.
In this logic, in addition to oil, the authorities want investments in agriculture, industry, tourism, manufacturing industry and mining, as well as telecommunications.
In a different angle, Manuel Nunes Júnior said that the authorities have decided to pay particular attention to the question of the affirmation of democracy and rule of law, underlining that no one can be above the law, which must be the same for everyone.
"Everyone should feel like a free citizen with the capacity to intervene and solve their problems", he concluded.
The Angolan delegation at the London Summit includes, in addition to Manuel Nunes Júnior, the minister of Finance, Vera Daves, the minister of Mineral Resources and Oil, Diamantino Azevedo, the Governor of the National Reserve Bank of Angola (BNA), José de Lima Massano, and the Angolan ambassador to the United Kingdom, Geraldo Sachipengo Nunda.
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