On May 8, President Mauricio Macri announced that the Argentine Government would initiate conversations with the International Monetary Fund. The public statement came after a week in which the national currency was devalued by 3%. A day later, Chief of Staff Marcos Peña declared that negotiations with the IMF would take place during the next six weeks. Public officials are now seeking the support of opposition leaders, although they will try to prevent the discussion of the issue in Congress. Next week a technical mission of the IMF will arrive in the country.
Marcos Peña said that the IMF loan will be a support to sustain the path of gradualism that the government chose to reach fiscal balance in a context of external vulnerability. He argued that “the government managed to prevent a major economic crisis” but that “there is no similarity between the present situation and other crises that Argentina has gone through in the past.” As far as Government’s assessment goes, Argentina shows robust economic indicators, a Central Bank with reserves, institutional independence and a solid economic program.
Minister of Finance Nicolás Dujovne is already in Washington holding meetings with IMF officials to agree on the terms of the loan. Meanwhile, President Mauricio Macri held a meeting with opposition governors to gain political support for this highly controverted initiative.