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Argentina ditches central bank head on eve of bond exchange

Prat-Gay and Fallon: The decision not to
reappoint Prat-Gay as Argentina's central
bank governor came as a complete surprise.

This year, for the first time, Euromoney has presented its award for central bank governor of the year to someone who isn't a central bank governor (see Euromoney September 2004). At the end of September, two weeks before the IMF/World Bank meetings, the mandate of Argentina's Alfonso Prat-Gay expired and president Néstor Kirchner did not renew it. By Argentine standards, Prat-Gay had a good term. As he said, when receiving his award from Padraic Fallon, chairman of Euromoney Institutional Investor: "When we took office in December 2002 we had a lot of ambitions, the main one being to make it to the end of the term – this being a country whose central bank is only 68 years old and has had 48 governors along the way."

Nevertheless, the abrupt decision not to reappoint him came as a complete surprise. There was certainly no hint that he was doing a bad job: his peers have nothing but praise for him, and there was no scandal associated with his departure.

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