After over a year of stalled negotiations, the G7 in mid-January strong-armed the IMF into signing an agreement that will roll over $6.6 billion of Argentina's debt.
After a record-breaking eleven months of failed talks with the IMF Argentina has, for the first time, defaulted on a payment to the World Bank.
A synthesis of the last two months in the ongoing negotiations between the IMF and the Argentine government.
Ministers at the Spring Meetings agreed that the IMF should not, except in “exceptional circumstances” provide large bailouts to countries in financial crises.
The number of pundits up in arms over the IMF’s handling of the crisis in Argentina continues to mount. The most recent selection includes Brazilian President, Henrique Cardoso, and ex-World Bank Chief Economist, Joseph Stiglitz.
The Nigerian government has cancelled its IMF programme. IMF spokesperson tests Argentinians’ sense of humour by agreeing that mistakes may be made again in the future. He explained: “that is economics. And that is why it is so much fun”.
Many eyes are now looking to see how Argentina will manage its financial and political crises.
A recently formed movement of unemployed Argentinians erected roadblocks to protest at the government’s drastic cut-backs in public spending.
In August, Argentinian teachers, doctors and public workers went on strike and unemployed workers and students blocked roads to protest against rising unemployment and cuts in pensions and salaries.
The crisis in Argentina deepened in March after three ministers, including the Education and Economy Ministers, resigned after the government agreed a new austerity programme with the IMF.
After weeks of jockeying by the Argentinian government, the IMF and the US Treasury Department finally agreed to provide $18 billion to bailout Argentina’s troubled economy in November.
Argentine church leaders joined labour groups in late May to demonstrate against IMF economic policies.