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Kenya’s debt load closed the 2021-2022 fiscal year at Ksh.8.6 trillion with public debt having grown by 11.5 per cent year over year from Ksh.7.7 trillion in June 2021.

New provisional data from the National Treasury shows gross public debt was up by Ksh.822.5 billion across the period with the debt stock split in half between domestic and external loans.

“The increase in the public debt is attributable to external loan disbursements; exchange rate fluctuation; and the uptake of domestic debt during the period,” the National Treasury said in its latest quarterly economic and budget review report.

Domestic debt rose the fastest in the period at 16 per cent to reach Ksh.4.288 trillion from Ksh.3.697 trillion a year prior.

Meanwhile, the external public debt stock was up by a lower 7.3 per cent, climbing to Ksh.4.29 trillion from a flat Ksh.4 trillion previously.

Non-bank & non-residents hold the bulk of Kenya’s domestic debt at Ksh.2.2 trillion through holdings of Treasury bills and bonds ahead of banks who hold Ksh.2.1 trillion of Kenya’s local debt.

Externally, multilateral lenders including the World Bank and the International Monetary Fund (IMF) hold most of Kenya’s debt at an equivalent Ksh.1.9 trillion.

Bilateral creditors and commercial banks meanwhile each hold Ksh.1.2 trillion of Kenya’s external public and publicly guaranteed debt at the end of June 2022.

Despite its lower proportion, Kenya continues to incur more cost in servicing external commercial debt.

For instance, half of external debt service payments or 49.9 per cent of payments were made to commercial creditors in contrast with 33.4 and 16.7 per cent for bilateral and multi-lateral creditors.

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