IMF Sees $45 Billion Deal With Argentina Pushed Into 2022

The International Monetary Fund privately estimates that a deal allowing Argentina to reschedule payments on $45 billion owed to the lender will be pushed into 2022 as President Alberto Fernandez has little incentive to quickly agree on the basis of a new program, Bloomberg News reported. While the IMF has said it’s constructively engaging with Fernandez’s administration, negotiations entailing fiscal austerity aren’t expected to make much progress before Argentina’s midterm elections in November, said five people familiar with the talks, asking not to be identified because discussions are private. Pressure on Argentina for a faster deal has also eased as the government will likely have enough money to cover $4.58 billion in principal and interest payments due to the Fund later this year. It expects to receive $4.4 billion in IMF reserves in August, as part of a global injection of funds to fight the economic impact of the pandemic, and has also seen larger-than-expected dollar revenue due to rising prices of soybeans, a top export product. More crucially, Argentina and the IMF haven’t so far agreed on economic projections that will be the basis for a new program, according to two of the people, one of whom called the estimates provided by the country overly optimistic. Read more.