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Government debt

Filipe Naigulevu
Tuesday, November 07, 2017

FIJI'S total Government debt stood at $4.72billion ($4,721.7 million) as of August this year, the central bank noted in its latest quarterly review.

According to Reserve Bank's September Review, the debt level was equivalent to 44.4 per cent of Fiji's gross domestic product (GDP).

In terms of composition, the central bank recorded that domestic debt was $3.3b ($3,318.1m) during the review period which was equivalent to 31.2 per cent of GDP.

External debt stood at $1.4b ($1,403.6m) in August, which was 13.2 per cent of the country's GDP.

Compared with August 2016,total Government debt rose by 5.1 per cent led by an increase in both external (12.8 per cent) and domestic (2.2 per cent) debt.

At the end of April, Fiji's total outstanding debt stood at $4.5b, out of which $1.3b were external loans and $3.2b were domestic loans.

The total public debt level for the 2017/2018 fiscal year is projected to be around 47.5 per cent of GDP.

The $4.3 billion 2017/2017 National Budget announced earliest this year will see the Government borrow $716.8 million to pay for the deficit.

This will be financed through overseas loans worth $184m and locally raised bonds totalling $532m.

Meanwhile, the country's foreign reserves (RBF holdings) stood at $2.4b ($2,409.2m) as at October 31, sufficient to cover 5.8 months of retained imports of goods and non-factor services (MORI).

Fiji's foreign reserves also grew over the month of October by $2.4 million to $2.4b ($2,409.2m) which is sufficient to cover 5.8 MORI. The high level of foreign reserves were largely attributed to lower payments for mineral fuel and machineries.

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