A welcome announcement: the so-called G7 (the meeting of financial ministers from France, Germany, Canada, Italy, Japan, U.S., and the UK) has announced that it will call off all of Haiti's bilateral debts to those countries.
Billions had already been written off in previous years. It is uncertain exactly how much is represented in this particular instance of forgiveness although, BBC reports, the amount "could be quite small."
"We are committed in the G7 to the forgiveness of debt, in fact all bilateral debt has been forgiven by G7 countries vis-a-vis Haiti," [Canadian finance minister Jim] Flaherty said at the end of the two day gathering of finance ministers in the Arctic town [of Iqualit in northern Canada].
"The debt to multilateral institutions should be forgiven, and we will work with these institutions and other partners to make this happen as soon as possible," he added.
British Prime Minister Gordon Brown hailed the pledge, saying: "It must be right that a nation buried in rubble must not also be buried in debt."