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Kicillof: 'If banks want to pay with their own money, the government won't resist it'

Economy Minister Axel Kicillof during the press conference at the Economy Ministry.

Economy Minister Axel Kicillof today referred to the vulture fund battle amid failed negotiations with holdouts, and said that saying Argentina defaulted on its debt is an "atomic nonsense" adding "those who today cheer the apocalypse, applauded the 2001 (crisis)."

During a press conference held this afternoon at the Economy Ministry, Kicillof warned US judge Thomas Griesa, who led the Argetnine debt case, "is endagering the 92 percent of exchange bondholders to favour vulture funds."

“There is no default. There are collection problems due to a judiciary sentence. The money held by judge Griesa is not ours, it belongs to bondholders,” argued Kicillof, adding the New York judge’s way of handling negotiations are “Guinness record material” thanks to his “incongruence.”

The Economy Minister explained default can be reached in four ways: not paying, non-compliance of other obligations, moratorium, and validity (in the case the Argentine Government objects the validity of the bonds).

“Argentina paid. The payment is done. Argentina deposited the money,” Kicillof said, denying the default.

AGREEMENT BETWEEN PRIVATES

Kicillof also warned there is a “campaign to seed uncertainty, panic and terror” in reference to media articles that insinuated yesterday the conference he held crushed the deal between private banks and holdouts.

“There have been a lot of badly informed, malicious opinions circulating. The government’s attitude towards them is to continue working, as we have a lot to do,” he said.

Kicillof told reporters the government does not oppose an “agreement between private parts” although he highlighted there are “some conditions” for a pact like that to come through.

“If banks want to pay with their own money, the government won't resist it. What the government cannot do is to pay holdouts or anyone who buys their bonds more than it paid exchange bondholders, because of the RUFO clause that forbids that exact operation. Also, the government cannot take part in a negotiation between private banks and vultures because of the same reason,” he said.

Yesterday, Ambito.com revealed an agreement between private banks and holdouts was close to being reached, but banks were yet to define how the bond repayment will be effected after the SEDESA option fell. Kicillof said that in spite of that, it still is “convenient” for private banks to buy the bonds as they would lose less than with a supposed collapse of public bonds in a default scenario.

“As this situation affects private banks though, because the bonds they hold would lose price, they have an incentive to reach an agreement,” he concluded.

Kicillof did not make any more comments about the supposed agreement between private banks and holdouts, and said he was expecting more information on tomorrows hearing with judge Griesa as he did not know “who has been summoned to the meeting.”

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Tags:  Argentina  economy  Kicillof  debt  Griesa  holdouts  





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