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France to cancel Haitian debt

Published:Sunday | January 17, 2010 | 12:00 AM


France's Finance Minister says she has asked creditors of earthquake-ravaged Haiti to speed up plans to cancel its debt.

Christine Lagarde says she "made contact with all Paris Club members so we accelerate the cancellation of the government of Haiti's debt".

France is president of the Paris Club of creditor nations, an informal group of industrialised countries.

Lagarde said Friday she is also asking non-members Venezuela and Taiwan, who are owed significant amounts by Haiti, to help in debt reduction.

France was owed €58 million (US$84 million), of which €4 million was already cancelled. The rest was due to be cancelled in stages over several years until 2014. This will now be sped up.