BUENOS AIRES (AFP) – Argentina told Citibank and Bank of New York Mellon on Monday to either execute its debt payments or give it back money frozen in its dispute with two creditors.
A US federal judge has ordered the banks not to transfer payments on the debt Argentina restructured after its 2001 economic crisis until the country settles a $1.3-billion dispute with the two “holdout” creditors, hedge funds NML Capital and Aurelius Capital Management.
BNY Mellon is currently sitting on a $539 million interest payment Argentina was due to make on June 30, and Citibank is barred from making a $200-million payment due on September 30.
The government in Buenos Aires took out an advertisement in Argentine and US newspapers announcing it had asked BNY Mellon to step down as trustee for its restructured debt and transfer the $539 million to a new payment agent.
BNY Mellon dismissed any suggestion that it would resign, and told AFP it would continue to “fulfil the court orders” by which it is bound as trustee.