LatinNews Daily - 1 August 2023

In brief: Argentina uses loan, yuan to pay IMF debt

* Argentina’s Economy Minister Sergio Massa has announced that the government paid the equivalent of US$2.7bn that was due to the International Monetary Fund (IMF) on 31 July without using “a single dollar” of the country’s dwindling foreign currency reserves. In a recorded message, Massa said that Argentina would make the debt payment via a US$1bn loan from the Latin American development bank (CAF) and the equivalent of US$1.7bn in Chinese yuan obtained through a currency swap agreement with China’s central bank. This is the second time that Argentina has resorted to using the yuan to pay off its debt. The payment comes several days after Argentina’s government announced that it had negotiated a new staff-level agreement with the IMF in light of the impact of the worst drought to hit the country in decades. In his message, Massa stated that the drought had cost Argentina over US$20bn in exports and over US$5bn in public sector income.

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