Key officials to meet IDB, IMF, World Bank, private investors as US urges settlement
Accompanied by most of his top advisors, Finance Minister Alfonso Prat-Gay will depart today on a high-profile international trip dubbed a “roadshow,” during which he hopes to lure investors into snapping up billions of dollars’ worth of Argentine bonds.
The tour will be key to the government’s bid to secure fresh funds with which to pay the so-called “vulture” funds, led by Paul Singer’s Elliot Management. The Pink House faces an April 14 deadline to pay off the holdouts and closing this chapter would open the door for other international loans that could finance President Mauricio Macri’s economic programme.
According to Prat-Gay, cash from the bonds will be key, in order to prevent “brutal austerity” from being enacted in the country.
The minister will first travel to the Bahamas to participate in the annual meeting of the InterAmerican Development Bank (IDB), which will take place tover the weekend.
His goal at the IDB event will be to secure funds totalling US$5 billion until 2019, of which US$800 million could be disbursed this year, cash the IDB has already agreed to loan to Argentina.
After that, Prat-Gay will travel to New York for the “road show” per se, where he will joined by departmental Vice-Minister Pedro Lacoste and Finance Secretary Luis Caputo, among others.
The latter was key in securing a US$5-billion loan from international banks that was used to boost the country’s Central Bank foreign currency reserves prior to negotiations with the holdouts. Caputo also acted as Argentina’s representative in New York during talks with the funds.
Finance Undersecretary Santiago Bausili and special adviser Vladimir Werning will also be travelling with the team, but will make separate stops on the US West Coast and Europe, in order to maximize the amount of potential investors contacted. The plan will be similar to what officers from Buenos Aires province did in March, when they sold an estimated US$1.25 billion of bonds.
Deutsche Bank, UBS and JP Morgan will work with the country on sales abroad, while HSBC, Santander, BBCA and Citibank will partner the country at home.
IMF, World Bank
Prat-Gay’s last stop will come next Thursday, with his participation in an International Monetary Fund (IMF) and World Bank meeting — which lasts until April 17.
Among his goals will be moving forward in conversations with IMF officials to restart the institution’s audits on the country, which could be the first step to obtain new IMF loans.
Date: April 7, 2016