The African Development Bank (AfDB) said Tuesday it will avail funds to Zimbabwe to help the nation clear its debt to the regional financial institution.
Zimbabwe owes the AfDB 601 million U.S. dollars and the debt is part of the 9 billion dollars that Zimbabwe owes to creditors including the World Bank and the International Monetary Fund.
Finance Minister Patrick Chinamasa told a press conference that the AfDB would give Zimbabwe the funds as part of its strategies to help the debt-ridden country clear its arrears to multilateral and bilateral institutions.
The African development bank has set aside some funds to assist Zimbabwe in clearing its arrears. They have assured us that those funds that have been set aside to assist Zimbabwe in clearing its arrears will be available to us up to the end of December 2016, Chinamasa said.
He said Zimbabwe would make every effort to ensure that it utilizes the funds in the given period.
Speaking at the same press conference, visiting AfDB executive director Tapsoba Sibry re-affirmed the commitment of the AfDB to continue assisting the country in clearing its arrears.
"The level of resources that we will be putting in the operation will be decided after we return to Abidjan but at this point in time we have just assured the minister that we have the resources available to do so.
"The total amount of arrears to the AfDB is 601 million dollars and the resources that we are putting aside will clear the AfDB arrears," he said.
Tapsoba is heading a 12-member delegation at the invitation of Zimbabwe to discuss the country's debt clearance strategies to the IMF, Wold Bank and the AfDB.
Zimbabwe is due to meet its creditors in Peru next month to discuss how it plans to clear the 1.8 billion dollars debt arrears to the three multilateral financial institutions.
The IMF last week said after it would implement, together with the Zimbabwe government, a three-year comprehensive economic reform program to bolster the country's economic growth, which is projected at a mere 1.5 percent in 2015.