Africa Action’s Campaign to Cancel Africa’s Debt mobilizes pressure on the U.S. government to push for 100% debt cancellation for all impoverished African countries without harmful conditions. According to Africa Action, Africa's over $200 billion debt burden is the single biggest obstacle to the continent's development. Most of this debt is illegitimate, having been incurred by despotic and unrepresentative regimes. African countries spend almost $14 billion annually on debt service, diverting resources from HIV/AIDS programs, education and other important needs. The U.S. and other rich countries have resisted calls to cancel this debt, instead proposing partial solutions that are inadequate and impose harsh economic policies on indebted countries.
Efforts to retire Africa’s debt have focused mostly on debt owed to institutions like the World Bank and International Monetary Fund (IMF). In 2015 the IMF enacted a $100 million debt relief package for Ebola-impacted West African countries: Guinea, Liberia and Sierra Leone. The IMF also expanded a new IMF debt relief fund for countries struck by natural disasters – in response to the Haitian earthquake of 2010- to include health crises[AA1] .