S&P Global Ratings Services cut its assessment of Zambia’s debt to selective default after it said it couldn’t meet payments and skipped a coupon on its Eurobonds last week.
The ratings company didn’t wait for the 30-day grace period after the missed coupon payment to expire. This is the latest blow to Zambia, which is trying to convince bondholders to give it a six-month interest payment holiday while it drafts debt restructuring plans. S&P forecast that the nation will remain in default at least through the six months.
“We view the nonpayment of debt service and the statement that the government will not make debt service payments as a default on its commercial debt obligations,” the company said in a statement Wednesday.