STATEMENT OF THE GOVERNMENT OF THE REPUBLIC OF SURINAME08-05-2021
Paramaribo, May 7, 2021 The Republic of Suriname notes with disappointment today’s misleading and factually incorrect statement of the recognized Bondholder Committee for its outstanding 2023 and 2026 Eurobonds.
Instead of offering support for Suriname and its people in this difficult time, the members of the Bondholder Committee have chosen to mischaracterize the process leading up to Suriname’s historic staff-level agreement with the IMF reached on 29 April.
The Republic denies that it has breached its commitments to bondholders made in the April consent solicitation. Far from breaching such commitments, the Suriname authorities for many weeks have been sharing with the Committee’s advisors all relevant historical data and forecasts necessary to assess the macro-fiscal framework and policy commitments underpinning the IMF-supported program. This was an arduous task given the substantial level of data gathered and provided to the Committee’s advisors. The Committee’s advisors were encouraged to provide their input and views on the shared information right up until the announcement of the staff-level agreement, including during virtual meetings with IMF staff. Although members of the Committee declined to participate in this process because they did not wish to be restricted from trading their securities, the Committee’s advisors provided certain feedback on the macro-economic framework to the Republic and IMF staff before the staff-level agreement was finalized. Where the advisors’ feedback could not be incorporated, the Republic provided an explanation as to why it could not. For instance, with respect to the Committee advisors’ suggestion that future oil revenues be included in the macro-economic framework and debt sustainability analysis, the Republic explained that IMF staff had advised that it is best practice to exclude unproven reserves at this stage of the exploration process and that the Republic and IMF staff had agreed to follow such best practices. Further, in response to queries from the Committee’s advisors, IMF staff provided creditors a detailed explanation of the macro framework underpinning the staff-level agreement.
There are few - if any - examples of sovereigns in debt distress which have made such efforts to be transparent with private creditors before staff-level agreement is reached with the IMF.
It is regrettable that the Committee members, no doubt disappointed by the performance of their investments, have chosen to criticize Suriname’s new government - which is taking the necessary steps to address the consequences of the irresponsible and unsustainable policies of the past.
The financial and economic crisis in Suriname is creating great pain and hardship for the people of the country. In order to create the foundation for future prosperity and financial stability, the government has embarked upon a challenging but ambitious program of action with the support of the IMF. The people of Suriname will bear much of the burden of the adjustments needed to create a brighter future, but Suriname’s international creditors will need to make a substantial contribution.
The government hopes and expects that the Bondholder Committee will reconsider its ill-informed course of action, and will choose to participate responsibly in Suriname’s forthcoming debt restructuring negotiations – which will begin shortly – alongside other creditors in accordance with international best practice.