Tongaat Hulett is asking 10 lenders for a break from payments on as much as R11bn of debt so it can recover from the impact of having to restate accounts, says CEO Gavin Hudson.

The embattled sugarmaker is spending about R1bn a year servicing the borrowings and is looking to negotiate a freeze by the end of July, Hudson said in an interview at Tongaat’s 19th-century Durban headquarters, an old farmhouse surrounded by sugarcane fields. The company is in the process of selling assets and cutting costs to strengthen the balance sheet, he said...

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