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Argentina affirms IMF debt programme, warns of quarterly target changes

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Buenos Aires, July 6 (Ajit Weekly News) The Argentine government reiterated its commitment to the International Monetary Fund (IMF) debt programme, but raised the possibility of changes in the targets for upcoming quarters, Argentina’s new Minister of Economy Silvina Batakis has said.

“We have agreed to this program as Argentines and we have to comply with it, looking at the goals in each review. There will be some modifications to the quarterly goals because the world is changing,” Batakis told a local radio station.

The minister confirmed that the quantitative goals for the second quarter of the Extended Facilities Program with the IMF were met, but that continued fulfillment will be complicated as of the second half of the year, Xinhua news agency reported.

“We have to be realistic, tensions will exist and we have to work together with this economic program and make the necessary adjustments so that the population’s living standards can improve,” she added.

The official said that she will hold conversations with IMF technicians on Tuesday to discuss the course of the current financial program, which seeks to resolve an Argentine debt of $44.5 billion.

Addressing the country’s inflationary problem, Batakis said, “We are not going to reduce inflation to a single digit in the short term, it is a longstanding issue in Argentina. For that we need our productive structure to grow. Expectations are the most difficult thing to modify and that is what we are here for, to bring certainty so that inflation begins to drop.”

On Monday, Batakis advocated the use of several tools to fight inflation in the South American country, including an interest rate hike and a fiscal deficit correction.

Regarding the dollar exchange rate in Argentina’s official market, Batakis affirmed that it is “at the level it should to be,” ruling out a devaluation jump.

–Ajit Weekly News

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