Buenos Aires Times

argentina PRESIDENT IN NEW YORK

Macri: Argentina will get more IMF funds – and we won't default

'There is no chance we will default,' president tells media during visit to New York for UN General Assembly.

Tuesday 25 September, 2018
President Mauricio Macri.
President Mauricio Macri. Foto:Presidencia de la Nacion

President Mauricio Macri said Monday that Argentina will receive additional funding from the International Monetary Fund (IMF) and dismissed the changes the crisis-hit country would suffer a default.

"We are going to have more support from the IMF, although I cannot say how much because negotiations are ongoing," said Macri, whose government agreed on a three-year, US$50-billion rescue lending programme with the IMF in June.

"There is no chance that Argentina will default," he added at an event hosted by Bloomberg television in New York. "Zero."

The IMF said last week that its team of negotiators in Buenos Aires had made "important progress" on the economic reforms needed to strengthen the program supported by the Washington-based crisis lender.

An IMF spokesman said a budget proposal submitted by Macri's government was a key element in the reforms needed for a new loan package while adding that there was still no timeframe for finalising the aid.

While the proposed austerity budget has been welcomed by the IMF, it has sparked street protests in Argentina. 

Macri, who is in New York to attend this week's UN General Assembly, said he was trying to restore economic confidence.

"We are working with the IMF team and we'll present something that will bring confidence, more confidence than what we've had in the last 10 days when markets have turned around and things are moving better," he said.

"It's a very clear monetary policy that will show where we are going, that will show that we are really going to drop dramatically down the inflation and our needs for financial external support."

Inflation is expected to come in at around 42 percent this year.

When asked about the political cost of the agreement with the IMF and how it would damage his chances of running for president for a second term, Macri replied by saying he is "ready to be a candidate" for re-election in 2019, saying he believed Argentines were "mature" enough to understand the problems facing the country.

- AFP

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