The Minister of Finance, Luis Caputo, is carrying out a tough working agenda in the United States, where he travelled to participate in the 2017 World Bank and International Monetary Fund Spring Meetings.
This morning, Caputo attended a working breakfast with investors and businessmen from Americas Society and Council of the Americas (AS/COA) in the City of New York, where he also held a meeting with the president and CEO of AS/COA, Susan Segal. The Finance Minister and his team also met with the main banks of Wall Street.
After that, Mr. Minister gave a press conference with international journalists and national correspondents where he said “infrastructure investment is one of the main priorities of the agenda” in New York and Washington, where he will be travelling tomorrow. In that sense, he highlighted the importance of Spring Meetings due to the fact that “the World Bank is our strategic partner and we have many projects in common”.
Within this framework, he said: “Infrastructure projects in Argentina focus on transport and energy”, and he added: “The infrastructure program we are developing is very ambitious: railways, routes, oil, renewable energy, among other areas”. Likewise, he said: “We see great interest in investment. Some projects are already in progress; it is a process that has already begun and will be consolidating through the years”.
In addition, he said the country “has covered 70% of its financial needs for this year”, and he explained that “we have a fiscal responsibility agreement with the Provinces according to which they have to coordinate with the National Government their issues and the time and manner in which they access the market”.
Caputo also highlighted the need to “make the domestic market grow and develop the local capital market”. In that sense, he said: “We are already working on a Bill to change the capital market and we look forward to the support of the different sectors in Congress. We need a bigger local market to finance growth”.
Lastly, Mr. Minister said: “The exit from default and a long-term curve in pesos resulted in the reference rates to grant loans to SEMs and individuals, which is what we are doing from the Ministry of Finance trough the coordination of public banks”, and he added: “This way, the true country-risk is moving to businesses and individuals at a level of lower rates and longer terms. There will be more credit for individuals and SMEs, which will foster financial inclusion”. Caputo also said: “The Government wants to lower financing costs for industries and businesses” and he added: “The Argentine society supports the process of change we are carrying out”.
In addition, tomorrow Caputo and the team of the Ministry of Finance will continue their agenda in the City of Washington, where Mr. Minister will participate in the Panel “Infrastructure: Latin America and the Caribbean’s New Growth Engine” and the Chief of Cabinet, Pablo Quirno, will participate in the Global Infrastructure Facility (GIF) Advisory Council Meeting, “Country Infrastructure Program. Focus on Latin America”, among other events and bilateral meetings.