American rating agency, Standard & Poor’s indicated in a recent report that sovereign commercial loans to SSA (sub Saharan Africa) nations would decrease by 20% in 2016, down to $37 billion. This based on data on 18 of the region’s countries which the agency rates.

The report adds that 64% of these loans, a little more than $23.7 billion, will be in local currencies while the remaining will be mobilised on the international market. 38% of the mobilized loans, about $14 billion, according to S&P, will be used to payback long-term loans which have reached maturity. The year before, $18 billion was used to refinance matured long-term loans.

Given these conditions, S&P expects an additional net commercial debt of $23 billion, and overall outstanding to grow to $300 billion.

Added to concessional loans, the global debt of S&P-rated SSA countries should reach $403 billion, thus rising 6.8%. Out of this amount, short-term debt should reach $53 billion by the end of 2016.