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García Padilla says he is available to negotiate with creditors

By on September 7, 2016

SAN JUAN – Gov. Alejandro García Padilla said Wednesday his administration is completely willing to engage in debt restructuring talks with creditors and achieve voluntary agreements to that end.

“The numbers have to add up. That’s all we ask,” said the governor when asked about the matter during an event in San Juan.

He considers himself available to negotiate, while accusing the majority of Puerto Rico creditors of not being so.

Although a significant number of creditors have chosen to wait for Promesa’s fiscal board to begin work, others have kept discussions on possible restructuring agreements, sources recently said. Some of these creditors would include holders of Sales Tax Financing Corp. (Cofina by its Spanish acronym) bonds and some mutual funds.

See Stuck in a Holding Pattern

“I know there have been creditors who have sought to reach agreements,” García Padilla admitted, adding that some groups have contacted commonwealth advisers. He then described the role of the U.S. Treasury on the matter as one of validation, “to help out that the numbers are correct.”

Meanwhile, the governor said he will only accept “sustainable” agreements that ensure that the island would not find itself “in the same hole” within the next 10 to 15 years.

Early last month, the governor said he had ordered his fiscal team to resume “good faith negotiations with creditors” to access the restructuring mechanisms of the Puerto Rico Oversight, Management & Economic Stability Act, or Promesa.

However, government sources have said the administration’s efforts are mostly aimed at completing the revision of its long-term fiscal and economic growth plan. The goal would be to present the document before the end of September, along with a new commonwealth financial report.

See: Gov’t to Submit Updated Fiscal Plan to Oversight Board and Puerto Rico Gov’t Awaits Deadline for Fiscal Plan

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