Argentina Seeks to End Legal Conflict With Creditors, Macri Says

  • Macri says Argentina's vision on arrears has changed
  • Argentina wants debt mediator to find reasonable holdout deal

Argentina has turned a page and wants to end a decade-long legal battle with holdout creditors left over from the 2001 default, Argentine President Mauricio Macri said.

Macri said he wants Daniel Pollack, who was appointed by a New York court to mediate an accord between Argentina and a group of bondholders led by billionaire hedge fund owner Paul Singer, to help facilitate a “reasonable deal” in order to end the conflict and open the doors to foreign investment once again in the South American country. Finance Secretary Luis Caputo will meet with Pollack and representatives of the holdout creditors in New York tomorrow to restart talks.

Macri, who took office a month ago, said the stance taken on the issue by his predecessor Cristina Fernandez de Kirchner “wasn’t rational” and that he hoped Pollack would help the two parties find common ground. In July 2014, Fernandez refused to abide by a U.S. court’s ruling to pay the holdouts in full when servicing restructured debt, causing Argentina to default for a second time in 13 years.

“It’s very important that we resolve the problems of the past,” Macri said in a press conference in Buenos Aires. “We want to stop being a country that’s branded as not honoring its pledges and we want to resolve all outstanding issues.”

While Argentina managed to restructure about 93 percent of its debt by imposing a 70 percent discount on creditors, Singer’s Elliott Management and other bondholders refused the offer and sued in court for better terms. Creditors have said they would accept repayment in bonds.

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