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Last Updated: Friday, 3 December, 2004, 11:19 GMT
Argentina can wait, says IMF
IMF building
The IMF suspended negotiations with Argentina last August
The International Monetary Fund has said it will reopen talks with Argentina only after a restructuring of more than $100bn of its state debt.

The scheme, which will leave bondholders with only some 25-50% of their initial investment, will now get under way in mid-January.

"We will just continue waiting," said Thomas Dawson, IMF spokesman.

The cash-strapped country has to repay the IMF $1.2bn during the first quarter of next year.

Argentina's financial crisis of 2001-02 culminated in debt default and the end of the fixed currency policy which had pegged the peso against the dollar for a decade.

On again, off again

Argentina's President Nestor Kirchner
Solving the debt problem is a tricky issue for President Kirchner
Although the economy is now growing again, the debt problem remains and solving it is a contentious issue for President Nestor Kirchner.

The debt exchange was supposed to launch last month, but international creditors did not give their full approval.

Mr Dawson make clear that the IMF is not affected by this delay because the relaunch of negotiations is link to an event and not to a specific date.

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