North America

As a follow up to its announcement on February 19 that the conditions to drawing the remaining undrawn commitments of the Tranche 2, under the senior secured superpriority multi-tranche debtor in possession term loan facility, had been met and that the company had formally requested such final disbursement, Grupo Aeroméxico, S.A.B. de C.V. announced that it has received such final disbursement in the amount of US$625 million.
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Rich countries’ governments borrowed $18 trillion from bond markets in 2020—more than ever before—but their borrowing costs hit a record low, due to a big rise in bond purchases by central banks, as well as a lack of concern about public debt levels among private investors, the Wall Street Journal reported. The jump in government bond sales during the first year of the coronavirus pandemic was almost twice that recorded when the global financial crisis struck, according to data from the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development research body.
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Ferry operator Moby SpA is suing a number of bondholders including Sound Point Capital Management in a New York court, alleging they made unlawful attempts to take control of the firm in a debt dispute, Reuters reported. Moby, which runs routes between the Italian mainland and islands such as Sardinia, says a bondholder group which also includes BlueBay Asset Management, and Cheyne Capital Management, attempted an “egregious tortious interference” to “unlawfully” take control of the company, according to documents filed on February 22. It’s now seeking damages from the funds.
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A lawyer for Frontera Holdings LLC, the owner of a natural gas plant near the U.S.-Mexico border, told a judge on Tuesday that it could face fines in Mexico after it was unable to provide electricity for several days due to the brutal winter storm that hit Texas, but that it intends to proceed with its proposed restructuring as planned, Reuters reported. Frontera attorney Matthew Fagen of Kirkland & Ellis told U.S.
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Member countries of the World Trade Organization are aiming to resurrect a dormant system for resolving trade disputes that has been a point of friction between the U.S. and other nations, the Wall Street Journal reported. The WTO’s Appellate Body, the apex of the Geneva-based group’s dispute-settlement system, has been effectively shut down since 2019 after the Trump administration blocked the appointment of new judges. U.S. complaints about the system, which predate the Trump presidency, center on Appellate Body rulings against tariffs and other remedies, limiting what U.S.

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Puerto Rico would substantially reduce its core government debt load under a new deal announced on Tuesday, but obstacles remain for the U.S. territory’s exit from bankruptcy, Reuters reported. The island’s federally created financial oversight board said that its agreement with certain bondholders was a major step toward resolving the bankruptcy, which began in 2017 in an effort to restructure about $120 billion of debt and other liabilities, including unfunded pensions.
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Mexico President Andres Manuel Lopez Obrador announced new tax benefits for Pemex as the beleaguered state oil company seeks to reverse long-term production declines and reduce debt, Bloomberg News reported. Petroleos Mexicanos will get an additional 14% credit stimulus to apply to the taxes it pays on hydrocarbons capped at 73.3 billion pesos ($3.6 billion) for this year, according to a presidential decree. The new benefit comes in addition to previous measures that reduced Pemex’s profit-sharing duty from 65%, to 58% in 2020 and 54% in 2021, respectively.

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U.S. Treasury Secretary Janet Yellen said that the U.S. will keep tariffs imposed on Chinese goods by the former Trump administration in place for now, but will evaluate how to proceed after a thorough review, Reuters reported. “For the moment, we have kept the tariffs in place that were put in by the Trump administration ... and we’ll evaluate going forward what we think is appropriate,” Yellen told the cable news network, adding that Washington expected Beijing to adhere to its commitments on trade.

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Mexico President Andres Manuel Lopez Obrador announced new tax benefits for Pemex as the beleaguered state oil company seeks to reverse long-term production declines and reduce debt, Bloomberg News reported. Petroleos Mexicanos will get an additional 14% credit stimulus to apply to the taxes it pays on hydrocarbons capped at 73.3 billion pesos ($3.6 billion) for this year, according to a presidential decree. The new benefit comes in addition to previous measures that reduced Pemex’s profit-sharing duty from 65%, to 58% in 2020 and 54% in 2021, respectively.
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Mexico is preparing a significant tax break for its state-owned oil firm while the constitution blocks it from taking on debt to increase social spending during the pandemic, Finance Minister Arturo Herrera said in an interview, Bloomberg News reported. Lowering the state’s demands on Pemex, its biggest taxpayer, could help the oil giant reorder its finances as it struggles with a $110.3 billion debt load, sinking production, and some of the highest tax obligations of any oil company in the world.
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