Explainer: Argentina's race to solve $323 billion debt conundrum

Explainer: Argentina's race to solve $323 billion debt conundrum

Argentina is racing to avoid a messy ninth sovereign default as it firefights recession, stubborn inflation and increasingly wary investors, who have pushed the South American grain giant’s bonds into distressed territory since last year.

The country, which had a total $323 billion debt pile at the end of 2019, needs to pay interest on three bonds on Friday, the same day as an increasingly fragile-looking deadline to strike a $65 billion restructuring deal with holders of its foreign debt.

Argentina’s center-left government made an initial proposal to bondholders in April, which was rejected by major creditor groups who have now made counter proposals. The two sides remains “meters apart,” though are edging closer.

The country’s economy minister, Martin Guzman, said on Tuesday he expected the Friday deadline for a restructuring deal to be pushed back with work still to be done to close the gap between the government and its creditors.

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