Argentina’s Peronists split over IMF deal as top lawmakers rebels | The Mighty 790 KFGO – Archyde

By Eliana Raszewski

BUENOS AIRES (Reuters) – A prominent Argentine lawmaker broke ranks with the country’s ruling party on Monday, rejecting a $44.5 billion deal in principle with the International Monetary Fund late last week, a sign of cracks in the ruling coalition.

Militant leftist Maximo Kircher said he was stepping down from his role as ruling party bloc leader in the lower house. Kirchner is also the son of two former Argentine presidents and historical leaders of the Peronist party: Nestor Kirchner and Cristina Fernandez, who is also the current vice president.

“This decision stems from disagreement with the strategy and least of all with the results achieved in the negotiations with the International Monetary Fund,” he wrote in a public letter.

Argentine President Alberto Fernandez said on Friday the country had reached an agreement with the IMF to restructure loan payments for debt initially taken during Mauricio Macri’s tenure in 2018, after years of negotiations.

The deal, with details still to be ironed out and approval by Congress and the IMF Board of Directors, was a major breakthrough but has created tensions within the Peronist coalition over the economic goals contained in the deal.

The deal would commit Argentina to reducing its deficit to zero by 2025 and slash the government’s hefty energy subsidies to keep tariffs low.

“I will remain in the block to facilitate the duties of the President and his entourage,” Kirchner wrote. “It’s best to step aside so[Fernandez]can pick someone who believes in this program with the IMF.”

(Reporting by Eliana Raszewski; Editing by Lincoln Feast.)

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