China is expected to issue a new $1 trillion bond issuance later this month, the central bank said on Tuesday, a day after a series of warnings that the country could run out of money.
China has been forced to borrow billions of dollars to keep up with soaring interest rates, and its borrowing costs are expected to rise again, making the country one of the world’s most indebted countries.
Its new issuance comes after years of mounting debt, including $1,000 billion of new loans issued by the central government to finance its massive economic expansion, and the issuance of another $800 billion of bonds in the first three months of this year.
The issuance of new debt comes as China’s economy is expected hit by the global financial crisis, which has pushed up debt payments to levels that have never been seen in the nation’s history.
China’s debt-to-GDP ratio is the highest in the world, with the average of 1.7% set to reach 4.4% in 2020, according to a government estimate.
That level of debt is expected for many countries, including China, as the country faces a slowing economic recovery, including in its booming manufacturing sector.
A series of high-profile incidents over the past week have raised concerns over the country’s financial health, including a crackdown on corruption in May that led to the arrest of two prominent officials, and reports that the central banking regulator was forced to step down.
The government said the issuance will not be accompanied by a devaluation, as China is already paying interest on its debt at historically low rates.
“The issuance is designed to meet the current economic environment in a way that will ensure the continued viability of the banking system and ensure the economic health of the economy,” the People’s Bank of China said in a statement.
“We will issue this issuance in accordance with the guidelines for the issuance that are laid down by the Central Bank.”
The issuance will be the first in a series over the coming years, with China expected to print another $400 billion in new bonds over the next five years, according a senior official at a central bank.
The country is already facing a shortage of cash, as more than half of the country is without bank accounts, and some banks have closed as a result of the economic slowdown.
A number of other countries have already scaled back debt issuance and have slashed their own borrowing costs.
Germany and Italy, two countries that were among the first to raise new debt, have also scaled back their lending rates.