Sri Lanka’s external debt, inclusive of project loans and international bond issues, increased by 13% year-on-year (YOY) to US$ 18.6 billion in 2011, according to the Ministry of Finance and Planning’s Annual Report for 2011.
However, external debt to GDP was recorded at 31.9%, down from 33% in 2010 and 32.2% in 2009. The report stated that increased GDP was responsible for offsetting foreign financing of the government’s substantial investments in strategic development projects, contributing to an overall decreasing trend in external debt to GDP over the last five years.
Total external debt service payments for last year amounted to US$ 987.5 million, in turn composed of the principal of US$ 629.6 million and US$ 357.9 million in interest payments.
Meanwhile, domestic debt at the end of last year stood at Rs.2,804 billion as compared with Rs.2,566 billion at the end of 2010, whilst the ratio of domestic debt to total debt declined to 42.9%, down from 45.8% in the previous year.
Also, total foreign financing disbursements for 2011 was recorded at US$ 1.9 billion of which US$ 1.7 billion was disbursed through project loans with the remaining US$ 170 million taking the form of grants, according to the Ministry of Finance and Planning’s Annual Report for 2011.
Approximately 58% of total disbursements in 2011 were through projects funded by Japan, China and the Asian Development Bank (ADB).
The total fund disbursement from Japanese financing amounted to US$ 380.4 million, whilst Chinese disbursements were reported at US$ 317 million and ADB disbursements at US$ 289 million.
The report added that a further US$ 7.33 million in committed undisbursed foreign financing for development programmes remained, of which 45% had already been committed to roads, transport, power and energy projects.