Buenos Aires province expects high take-up in $7 bln debt offer, source says

By Walter Bianchi

BUENOS AIRES, July 23 (Reuters) - Argentina's Buenos Aires province is confident of a high acceptance for its $7 billion debt restructuring after agreeing a deal with key creditors, a source close to the talks said, despite some bondholders criticizing the offer.

The province said on Wednesday that it had struck a breakthrough agreement in long-running talks with main creditors to restructure its international debts, though the key Ad Hoc bondholder group said it had not endorsed the deal.

"It is trusted there will be a high participation, while the inflexible funds that say they reject the agreement represent a very minority percentage," the person close to the talks said, asking not to be named as the negotiations were private.

The person said that the province had negotiated with creditors holding a large proportion of the bonds within the Ad Hoc group. The agreement had included main creditor GoldenTree Asset Management, the government said this week.

"The negotiation of the economic terms has already been closed with the main creditors," the person said. "The province is now completing the documentation to formalize the final amendment to the offer."

The local government has extended the invitation deadline for creditors to accept of reject the offer to Aug. 13.

Provincial bonds, which have been weighed down over the last year by the tense talks, default and threats of litigation, have risen recently as hopes of a deal have climbed.

Argentina's national government restructured over $100 billion in foreign currency debt last year after a ninth sovereign default. It is also locked in talks with the International Monetary Fund to revamp $45 billion in payments.

The South American grains producing nation, which was once a global economic powerhouse, has struggled with a series of currency and debt crises in recent decades that have weighed on growth and driven up poverty levels sharply.

Buenos Aires Province USD bond prices Link
Buenos Aires Province USD bond prices Link

Reporting by Walter Bianchi; Writing by Adam Jourdan
Editing by Marguerita Choy

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