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Ghana extends domestic debt exchange registration to Feb. 10 after 'glitches'

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Ghana has extended the deadline to register for its domestic debt exchange programme to Feb. 10, after some bondholders experienced "technical glitches" while completing the process, the finance ministry said in a statement on Tuesday.

It is the fifth time the West African nation has extended the deadline for the scheme, which it needs to complete to secure a $3 billion bailout from the International Monetary Fund.

Ghana is fighting its way out of a generational economic crisis by hiking interest rates to record speeds, cutting spending, and restructuring its local and foreign debt.

The results of the domestic tender process will be released on Feb. 13, and the final settlement will come out the following day, the ministry said in Tuesday's statement.

Ghana hopes 80% of bondholders will register for the programme, but holdouts have persisted despite several revisions to the original December offer.

Two major associations of individual bondholders on Monday urged their members not to register, and small groups of retirees have protested their inclusion in front of the finance ministry the last two mornings. Read More

Ghana exempted pension funds from the broader debt exchange in late December after widespread protest, but trade unionists have expressed concern they could be asked to participate once again. Opposition lawmakers on Monday called for the plan to be formally approved by Parliament before commencing.

Ghana's finance minister has repeatedly said that failing to secure an IMF support package could risk nationwide economic deterioration. Consumer inflation was 52.2% in December.

source: Reuters