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Sociedad martes 27 de agosto 2013

Today's top five stories in English

martes 27 de agosto 201312:38
The following is a summarized list of the top five stories of the day in Argentina.

  • President Cristina Fernández de Kirchner announced last night her decision to send a bill to Congress in order to reopen debtswaps for a third time, in the hope of convincing the 7 percent of creditors who refused to restructure their bond holdings in 2005 and 2010. Now, changing the payment jurisdiction to Argentina was a move that was being mused by the Government, considering that the potential ruling in New York will probably be less than favorable. However, this doesn't clear the country from a default risk, since the Government needs the swap to have at least 85 percent of acceptance.

  • Buenos Aires province governor Daniel Scioli said he supported the president's decision to reopen the debt swaps.  The governor said that "it's not right to kick things down the road so it's up to the next government to deal with them". Scioli added that this government's sustained policy of debt reduction has provided Argentina with a great opportunity to "eliminate that sword of Damocles hanging over our heads".

  • The so-called "dollar blue" exchange rate jumped an additional eight cents yesterday, reaching an average of 9.28 pesos. The Central Bank's international reserves hence fell below the 37 billion dollar-benchmark. It is estimated that the financial institution lost 79 million dollars yesterday, which means that Argentina's international reserves loss amounts to 6.3 billion dollars this year. By Tuesday morning, the "dollar blue" exchange rate was reaching 9.45 pesos after a 17 cents jump, while the official exchange rate traded at 5.64 pesos.

  • The conflict between LAN Argentina and the National Government continues, as the head of the organization responsible for airport regulations, Gustavo Lipovich has said that the Government is ready to take LAN to court if they fail to comply with the order to vacate their hangar in the Aeroparque metropolitan airport. Lipovich explained that this Friday is the deadline for the company to vacate the premises voluntarily, and failure to do so will prompt the Government to take legal action. He also said that there is a clause in their concession contract that says that if the Government demands it, the facilities must be vacated".

  • [UPDATE] The 48-hour strike was lifted on Tuesday afternoon after the Superintendency of Health Services agreed to a 9.5 percent increase in premiums starting next month.

  •  Private hospitals and clinics are going on strike for the next 48 hours to protest that the Government has yet not authorized health insurance companies to raise their premiums, leaving only emergency rooms operational for the next two days.  As the health services union recently negotiated a 26 percent salary increase, the head of the Argentine Chamber of Medical Institutions, Federico Diaz Mathé said that "the private healthcare industry is in a crisis" and assured that "if salaries go up but premiums remain untouched, the situation becomes unsustainable". Díaz Mathé said their demands "are legitimate" and assured that the Government "has the responsibility of authorizing the increase". Over 250 institutions throughout the country will be affected by the measure, so if you had an appointment scheduled for today or tomorrow, again, you're in tough luck. 

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