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Sovereign debt: Enabling Argentina

Given its reputation, it’s not surprising that Argentina’s bonds are pricing in a high chance of default in coming years. It’s a little harder to understand why the country’s creditors are enabling this.

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When Argentina defaults for the 10th time – in 2024 or thereabouts – there will be plenty of blame to go around. Most of the responsibility will surely be laid at the door of Martin Guzman, an academic campaigner for a new approach to renegotiating sovereign defaults and now economy minister of the perennially debt-stricken country.

Perhaps that will be unfair. Maybe blame would be better placed at the door of the IMF and the institutional investors who agreed the 2020 debt deal that enabled the government of Alberto Fernandez to return to Kirchner-era economic policies – with utterly predictable results.

“When trying to understand these type of governments, I always look at the people populating the key departments. It’s always the people – what are their motivations, their ideological biases. And if you look at the people, you have Matías Kulfas, Cecilia Todesca and Mercedes Marcó del Pont – all the people that were [formulating economic policies] under Cristina Kirchner are there now under Alberto Fernandez,” says one of the many economists, bankers and investors that preferred to speak anonymously to Euromoney for this story because of fears of damaging future business opportunities.

The


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Rob Dwyer is Latin America Editor. He has been a financial journalist since 1997 and has worked in London, New York and Sao Paulo, Brazil, where he is now based.
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