The Minister of Economy, Silvina Batakis , met this Monday with David Lipton, the right-hand man of the Secretary of the Treasury of the United States, Janet Yellen, and a team from said agency dedicated to the region, in the United States Treasury building. , located a few meters from the White House.
Batakis entered the meeting together with the Argentine ambassador to the US, Jorge Argüello , and the Deputy Minister of Economy and Secretary of Economic Policy, Karina Angeletti, the only companion of the head of the Palacio de Hacienda in the delegation that traveled from Buenos Aires.
Regarding Batakis’ presence in Washington, Arguello told Télam that the instruction she received from the President was “to put together an agenda with the express objective of being known and listened to,” both in “the Treasury and in multinational organizations, as well as with investors and funds that operate with Argentina”.
Minutes after entering the Treasury Department , the diplomat stated that with this series of meetings the Argentine government will seek to convey “the next steps it will take in economic matters.”
Batakis in the United States: an agenda full of activities
Batakis began the day with a working breakfast with collaborators from the Argentine Embassy in Washington and with Angeletti. The meeting with US Treasury officials is the minister’s first official activity.
In addition to Lipton, the Undersecretary for Institutional Relations, Andy Baukol , and the Deputy Undersecretary for the Western Hemisphere and South Asia, Michael Kaplan, are also part of the meeting.
Lipton was an official of the IMF and the team that put together the program signed by former President Mauricio Macri. She also participated in the negotiations to negotiate with the former Minister of Economy, Martín Guzmán, a refinancing agreement for the US$45,000 million of debt inherited from the management of the PRO, signed at the end of March 2022.
The agreement was signed before the start of the war between Russia and Ukraine, which changed the supply matrix of raw materials and therefore prices, and consequently the calculations of inflation and growth for the world economy and for Argentina.
Before resigning, Guzmán had agreed with the IMF that the quarterly goals could be more flexible but not the annual goals, which remain firm, according to what the board approved last month for Argentina.
It was when the IMF gave free rein to the first review and the payment of US$4.1 billion , which made it possible to cancel the maturities with the Fund. Now, the situation has worsened with a storm in the debt and exchange markets, which is putting pressure on the reserves of the Central Bank.
Lipton was an IMF official and the team that put together the program signed by former President Mauricio Macri
Batakis, in this context, will seek to see with Lipton , representative of the IMF’s main creditor, how to reach the goals or where to relax the annual goals of a program that is difficult to sustain.
In particular, find a way to cushion the seasonal outflow of dollars demanded by gas imports, to supply consumers first and then the Argentine productive apparatus.
The meeting will not last more than an hour, since later at 1:00 p.m. local time (2:00 p.m. in Argentina) Batakis will be received by the head of the Fund, Kristalina Georgieva , at the IMF headquarters, located on 19th Street, on the corner with H Street, in the northwest quadrants of Washington DC.
Batakis, together with the Deputy Minister of Economy, Karina Angeletti, arrived in the US capital yesterday at noon and in the early afternoon held his first working meeting with Ambassador Jorge Argüello at the diplomat’s residence.
For this afternoon, she also has a meeting scheduled with the Director General of World Bank Operations, Axel Von Trotsenburg.
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