Payments to the IMF for US$2.700 M are postponed pending the disbursement of the agency

Payments to the IMF for US$2.700 M are postponed pending the disbursement of the agency

To avoid further compromising reserves, the deals will be canceled at the end of the month, when the board is expected to approve the review and release a $5.3bn draft.

The Government and the International Monetary Fund agreed to postpone the payment of maturities that fell this week for US$2,717 million until March 31, the date on which the organization’s Board of Directors is expected to meet to approve the fourth revision of the agreement and the disbursement of some US$5.300 million.

Argentina had to pay US$917 million today and US$1,789 million on Wednesday, corresponding to the multimillion-dollar loan that Mauricio Macri took in 2018. In principle, these maturities were going to be paid in a timely manner with the money transfer that he will send the IMF itself after the approval of the audit on the goals of the fourth quarter of 2022, which was stipulated for the past weeks. But since the negotiation was extended in time due to the redefinition of the reserves goal and the economic forecasts for this year, both parties agreed to the extension.

“It will settle with the disbursement,” an official source told Ámbito. In this way, the Government avoids allocating an amount from international reserves that would have practically meant emptying the net holdings of the Central Bank.

This postponement was possible given that the technical staff of the organization has already approved the revision corresponding to 2022 and it only remains for the Board of Directors to vote to trigger the transfer of the corresponding SDRs.

The payment schedule for Argentina is very demanding in the coming weeks, since in April it will have to pay another US$2.6 billion to the agency. In this way, all the money that would enter the Central on Friday, March 31, will leave in less than a month. US$1,296 million mature on April 7, US$648 million on April 14, and US$681 million on April 28.

The current agreement maintains the payment dates of the stand-by program that Macri signed in 2018 and matched it with new disbursements for similar amounts in an Extended Facilities agreement. During 2022, this mechanism left Argentina with a balance in favor of US$5,000 million, which is reversed in 2023 with a negative balance of US$4,000 million.

This point is combined with the sharp fall in the income of foreign currency that the country will suffer this year due to the drought (the projections speak of up to US$20,000 million less), which led to the relaxation of the goals of accumulation of Bookings. Specifically, according to sources from the Ministry of Economy, it is about US$3,000 million less to accumulate until the end of March and about US$2,000 million less throughout the year. Due to the depth of the drought, some analysts consider that, even with the reduction, the objective is difficult to achieve.

While Sergio Massa and his team of closest collaborators continue to analyze measures to contain inflation and alleviate the shortage of foreign currency, yesterday the Economy and the Central Bank announced the arrival of disbursements for US$680 million from the Andean Development Corporation (CAF) and the Central American Bank for Economic Integration (CABEI), corresponding to credits recently negotiated by the Minister of Economy, which enter the reserves and are freely available. In addition, a new tranche of the swap with China will be activated for US$1,000 million for the free use of the BCRA (see separate).

Source: Ambito

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