By Adedapo Adesanya The latest update of the Global Debt Database by the International Monetary Fund (IMF) showed that total global debt (public and private) reached $188 trillion at the end of 2018. This is up by $3 trillion when compared to 2017 ($185 trillion) as increased borrowings from Nigeria, China, Argentina, and other countries contributed to this. In Nigeria\u2019s case, the country debt rose to N24.4 trillion at the end of the 2018 from N21.7 trillion in 2017. The IMF noted that global average debt-to-GDP ratio (weighted by each country\u2019s GDP) recorded an increase up to 226 percent in 2018, 1\u00bd percentage points above the previous year, adding that, \u201cthis was the smallest annual increase in the global debt ratio since 2004, a closer look at the country-by-country data reveals rising vulnerabilities, suggesting that many countries may be ill-prepared for the next downturn.\u201d The report added that in advanced economies the average debt ratio declined while it stated that was no clear sign of a significant push to reduce debt. On the other hand, looking at emerging market economies and low-income developing countries, the average debt ratios rose further. Referencing China, the Asian country\u2019s total debt ratio reached 258 percent of GDP at end 2018 which is the same as the United States and nearing the average for advanced economies, which was 265 percent. For Nigeria, which is classified as one of the 59 low-income developing countries, which has an income per capita level below a certain threshold of $2,700, the Debt Management Office (DMO) said that the country\u2019s debt service\/revenue for 2017 and 2018 were at 57 percent and 51 percent respectively. It was also added that the debt service figures had risen as a result of the increase in the debt stock and relatively high domestic interest rates. In the report, it was noted that, \u201cThe upward trend in the total debt ratio showed no sign of halting or slowing in either group (the advanced and emerging economies), with the main increase coming from public debt. The average public debt ratio increased by more than 2\u00bd percentage points in sub-Saharan Africa." It also noted that in emerging markets, excluding China, the average corporate debt ratio has recorded declines since 2015 and is now 4\u00bd percentage points above 2009, but added that countries have not been immune to a worsening of the quality of their corporate credit. \u00a0It was disclosed that the household debt ratio in emerging countries have been increasing steadily, but it remains half the level in advanced economies. Nigeria\u2019s current debt stood at N25.7 trillion, according to the DMO's website, as at June 30, 2019.