Massa talks with the IMF, affirms that he met the goals and travels to Washington at the end of this month awaiting the transfer of USD 4,000 million


Janet Yellen, Kristalina Georgieva, David Malpass and Mauricio Claver-Carone, Massa’s four targets on his tour of Washington

The Minister of Economy, Sergio Massa, will travel to the United States at the end of the month to try to accelerate the disbursement of some credits from multilateral banks and to review compliance with the goals for the second quarter of the year with the International Monetary Fund (IMF).

Official sources told Infobae that Massa, very satisfied with the results of yesterday’s tender in pesos, He will be in the North American capital between August 29 and 31, to meet with authorities from the Treasury Department, the IMF, the Inter-American Development Bank (IDB) and the World Bank. Then, he will go to New York for a meeting with executives and investors, who are as skeptical or more skeptical than Washington officials about Argentina’s prospects.

To pave the way for Massa’s visit to Washington, there are already contacts at two levels: On the one hand, the minister talks with the head of the agency’s Western Hemisphere Department, Ilan Goldfajn. On the other, the head of advisers to the Palacio de Hacienda, Leonardo Madcurtalks with the person in charge of the Argentine case, Luis Cubeddu.

The official sources affirmed that, after the disagreements over the departure of Martin Guzman and the ephemeral interim Silvina Batakisthe contact is more “on track” with the staff of the Fund, which must prepare between the end of this month and the beginning of September the report that will be submitted to the board for the next disbursement from Washington for 4,000 million dollars.

Massa and his team are in virtual dialogue with IMF staff, and the minister plans to meet with them and Georgieva in Washington at the end of the month.

The economic team believes that all these steps should ideally be completed before September, to comply with the payments to the Fund and for the IDB and the World Bank to continue lending to the country.

Regarding the fulfillment of the Government’s goals, the sources affirmed that they were reached in the April-June period and that the strong challenge is placed on the pattern of reserves for the third quarter. “We will see; until the end of September we have no financial problems with the IMF”, they commented to Infobae next to Massa, who affirms in a low voice that he already has the name of the deputy minister, but that he will not make it known until the political turmoil subsides after the commotion around Gabriel Rubinstein.

ECO GO's follow-up on IMF goals
ECO GO’s follow-up on IMF goals

An argument for the delay in accumulating reserves that the economic team would use is the slowness of some IDB credits that were planned for these months; in particular, USD 500 million was expected from a freely available credit that Mauricio Claver Carone stated that they were not in a position to be disbursed.

“I can’t imagine that they won’t give us a waiver for that issue if the case arises; all programs have waivers and several for deeper reasons than the current one with Argentina”, they explained, despite the fact that the key reason for the loss of reserves is the strong exchange rate gap. Net reserves are USD 640 million lower than those of December 2021 and, given that the accumulation goal is USD 4.4 billion in September, the BCRA should buy more than USD 5 billion in the remainder of the quarter, ECO GO specified. Despite the difference between the different prices, the economic team trusts in being able to obtain those dollars from the cereal companies to avoid a sudden devaluation of the official exchange rate that could further worsen the inflationary panorama, indicated the qualified official source.

Contacts between Claver Carone and Massa
Contacts between Claver Carone and Massa

In principle, Massa has already improved the channel of communication with the IDB, based on a direct dialogue he had with Claver-Carone last week, who promised to speed up disbursements for the country, after having harshly criticized the Government in a opinion piece in the Wall Street Journal. The root of the problem with the president of the bank was his bad relationship with the secretary of Strategic Affairs, Gustavo Beliz, who resigned when the relationship with the IDB and the World Bank was transferred to the Treasury Palace.

With the World Bank, the level of disbursements remained on track and now a CAF loan has been added for the Central Bank’s weak reserves.

Meanwhile, officials and analysts believe that Economy will buy some time with the extra settlement agreed with exporters, pending some definition of the international loan (REPO), which, according to experts, seems difficult to achieve with prices of sovereign bonds so low. It will be necessary to see if Massa manages to improve the mood on Wall Street when he spends a few hours in New York at the beginning of September; Stopovers in Paris to renegotiate the agreement with the Club and in Qatar in search of more dollars were postponed for now, waiting for the severe local financial crisis to calm down, at least slightly.

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