Follow CGSP on Social Media

Listen to the CGSP Podcast

Heard About Those Escrow Accounts Used to Secure Chinese Loans in Africa? Here’s What They Look Like in Action

Excerpt from a new report by the IMF that reviewed the Republic of Congo's debt situation and detailed the use of escrow accounts to service Chinese loans.

There’s been a lot of discussion in recent years about how Chinese lenders required high-risk borrowers in Africa and other developing countries to put large pools of money in offshore escrow accounts as a kind of insurance measure that guaranteed the creditor would be repaid.

But little is known about how those escrow accounts work in practice and when borrowing countries are forced to draw on them (and replenish) during difficult times.

  • Get a daily email packed with the latest China-Africa news and analysis.
  • Read exclusive insights on the key trends shaping China-Africa relations.
  • Full access to the News Feed that provides daily updates on Chinese engagement in Africa and throughout the Global South.

China, Africa and the Global South... find out what’s happening.

Subscribe today for unlimited access.

What is The China-Global South Project?


The China-Global South Project is passionately independent, non-partisan and does not advocate for any country, company or culture.


A carefully curated selection of the day’s most important China-Global South stories. Updated 24 hours a day by human editors. No bots, no algorithms.


Diverse, often unconventional insights from scholars, analysts, journalists and a variety of stakeholders in the China-Global South discourse.


A unique professional network of China-Africa scholars, analysts, journalists and other practioners from around the world.