Argentina’s top economic officials said the country has met the goals it agreed on with the International Monetary Fund to receive a next loan disbursement of US$5.4 billion.
“Argentina, as I’ve said many times, has complied with all targets required for this disbursement to happen,” Central Bank chief Guido Sandleris said at a conference hosted by newspaper Clarín in Buenos Aires. “We’re going to continue asking for the disbursement.”
The Central Bank chief said that, while it would be better for Argentina if the IMF released the next loan installment sooner rather than later, the country doesn’t need the money before the October 27 presidential election. He also suggested that the approval is taking time due to the Fund’s bureaucratic process.
“The IMF sometimes is a bureaucratic institution that moves at its own pace,” Sandleris said, adding that requirements imposed by the Fund can be “irritating” but eventually “positive.”
Speaking at the same conference, Finance Minister Hernán Lacunza echoed Sandleris and said he sees the IMF releasing the money by year-end.
The IMF’s next disbursement has been up for approval since September 15, but political uncertainty ahead of the election has put the deal in doubt. Argentine markets have sold off since Alberto Fernández defeated President Mauricio Macri in the August 11 PASO primary election. The frontrunner has so far given few specifics about the economic plans he would implement if elected.
Under the agreement, Argentina has met all the fiscal and monetary targets needed by June to receive the disbursement. Political uncertainty and a seemingly unsustainable debt path are putting the deal on hold for now, though.