BUENOS AIRES – US President Donald Trump telephoned his Argentine counterpart, Mauricio Macri, on Monday and “expressed his support” for the talks the South American country is holding with the International Monetary Fund to obtain a loan and alleviate the fiscal problems caused by the recent sharp devaluation of the peso.
“Macri thanked (Trump) for the expressions of support from (US) Treasury Undersecretary for International Affairs David Malpass, and Trump confirmed his support for the talks with the Fund,” said the Argentine President’s Office in a statement, in which it added that it was the US leader who called Macri.
In the 10-minute phone call, Macri “shared with his US counterpart the challenge for Argentina in reducing the fiscal deficit, and also (spoke about) the start of the talks with the IMF,” the text of the statement added.
The two leaders, who have known each other for decades in their capacity as businessmen, also spoke about other matters on the global agenda such as the G20 – which Argentina is heading this year – North Korea and the situation in Venezuela.
Last week, Malpass reiterated his “full support” for the agenda of Argentina’s “market-oriented reforms” after meeting with the South American nation’s finance minister, Nicolas Dujovne, and he “welcomed” the negotiations between Buenos Aires and the IMF.
Since April 25, the Argentina peso has devalued sharply due to the strong rise in US interest rates and the resulting capital flight toward that country, a situation that has severely disrupted the Argentine political, economic and social sectors, forcing the government to begin loan negotiations with the IMF and other multilateral entities to alleviate the consequences.
On Monday, the Argentine currency once more dropped sharply – by 7.59 percent – against the dollar at the market open.