Eurozone debt web: Who owes what to whom?
Europe is struggling to find a way out of the eurozone crisis amid mounting debts, stalling growth and widespread market jitters. After Greece, Ireland, and Portugal were forced to seek bail-outs, Italy – approaching an unaffordable cost of borrowing – has been the latest focus of concern.
But, with global financial systems so interconnected, this is not just a eurozone problem and the repercussions extend beyond its borders.
While lending between nations presents little problem during boom years, when a country can no longer handle its debts, those overseas banks and financial institutions that lent it money are exposed to losses. This could not only unsettle the home country of those banks, but could, in turn, spread the troubles across the world.
So, in the tangled web of inter-country lending, who owes what to whom? Click on a country in the circle to find out what they owe to banks in other countries, as well to find out their total foreign debt, including that owed by governments, monetary authorities, banks and companies.
Source: Bank for International Settlements, IMF, World Bank, UN Population Division
Notes on the data: The Bank for International Settlements data, represented by the proportional arrows, shows what banks in one country are owed by debtors – both government and private – in another country. It does not include non-bank debts. Only key eurozone debtors and their top creditors are shown. Although China is known to hold European debt, no comprehensive figures are available.
GDP figures are the latest complete 2010 figures from the IMF. The percentage of gross government debt to GDP is also the latest IMF calculation.
Overall gross external (or foreign) debt is taken from the latest 2011 World Bank/IMF figures and includes all debt owed overseas, including that owed by governments, monetary authorities, banks and companies. Gross external debt per head of population is calculated using the latest medium variant population figures from the UN Population Division.
Read the answers to frequently asked questions here.