Munich Personal RePEc Archive

Challenges Ahead: Sovereign Debt

Bredenkamp, Hugh and Hausmann, Ricardo and Pienkowski, Alex and Reinhart, Carmen (2019): Challenges Ahead: Sovereign Debt. Published in: Sovereign Debt: A Guide for Economists and Practitioners, Ali Abbas, Alex Pienkowski, Kenneth Rogoff, editors, Chapter 9 (London: Oxford University Press) (1 October 2019): pp. 365-404.

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Sovereign debt ratios in advanced and emerging economies have grown to near record highs. In low-income countries, debt levels have been gradually building since the debt relief initiative of the early 2000s; furthermore, the debt burdens may be higher than the official estimates reveal, as these data do not fully capture debts to China. In the event of debt servicing difficulties, a more fragmented creditor base may complicate and delay the restructuring process. This paper describes the sovereign debt landscape today and considers potential problems that might lie ahead for both creditor and debtor countries alike. Possibilities of how the global financial architecture might need to adapt to the changing global landscape are discussed.

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