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Sunday, March 26, 2023

“Argentina’s debt level is manageable”

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Journalist: How do you see the local debt situation today?

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Daniel Marx: The debt in foreign currency will have no relevant payments during this year, practically, and very few next year. Argentina is a country with medium debt, although it is more exposed to exchange rates than others due to the nature of its debt. However, today, Argentina’s level of indebtedness is manageable in relation to the percentage of GDP it represents. But I think that the main problem that Argentina has today is trust. And this has a whole history behind it, marked by two linked and central aspects: on the one hand, repeated breaches, which generate mistrust, and, on the other, the fact that we are a country with a very marked economic cycle of ups and downs and that it lacks a strong imprint of improvements in the activity or in the fiscal results. In this sense, what many wonder is if Argentina can break these cycles of the past. And therein lies part of the debate we have today: the challenge is to break out of these complex patterns.

Q.: What would have to be done to achieve this?

DM: It is key to demonstrate the commitment to pay and the intentions to comply. It is essential to prove that the commitments are really being carried out and that the negative aspects of the past will not be repeated. And the political variable, “the political”, is a very important element in this sense, of course, because the decisions that are made at that level are key.

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Q.: How do you see the minister’s management today?

DM: I believe that Massa has the merit of having managed to stabilize the economy and transform the view that Argentina was falling into an abyss. That is no longer the case, but we still have a long way to go to take off. It still remains for this to become a consolidated trend and that would favor a more sustainable development. What the Government must achieve, in the first place, is to control inflation and make a significant effort to maintain that achievement over time. And it is that, no matter how much effort is made at this time to reach price agreements, one swallow does not make a summer. Argentina has a relative price issue to resolve, which adds inflationary pressures. On the other hand, we have more restrictive issues, such as tax issues. This is, without a doubt, a year in which these variables interact more than ever due to electoral seasoning, because campaign years tend to be years of high spending.

Interview with Pilar Wolffelt

Source: Ambito

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