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HomeNewsTunisia: government debt default would cost banks $7.9bn, S&P Global says

Tunisia: government debt default would cost banks $7.9bn, S&P Global says

A sovereign debt default in Tunisia could cost the country’s banks up to $7.9 billion, which would represent 102 per cent of their total equity, ratings agency S&P Global warned on Tuesday.

Tunisia, which has seen its debt burden rise and economy shrink by 8.8% last year in real terms, started talks with the International Monetary Fund to seek a package of financial assistance. 

“Tunisian banks’ exposure to their sovereign has more than doubled over the past decade, along with a sharp increase in government indebtedness,” said S&P Global Ratings analyst Mohamed Damak.

The cost of default to the banks at $7.9 billion would equate to as much as 102% of the banking system’s total equity, or 17.3% of forecast 2021 nominal GDP, S&P added.

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