BUENOS AIRES, Sept 3 (Reuters) - An Argentine bill designed to sidestep adverse U.S. court rulings regarding the country’s defaulted debt may be amended to include France as a jurisdiction for making restructured bond payments, state news service Telam reported on Wednesday.
Argentina’s Senate was set to debate the proposal, which passed committee in the lower house of Congress a week earlier. President Cristina Fernandez wants to make debt payments locally and bring foreign debt under Argentine law.
On Tuesday legislators were visited by government officials to discuss possible amendments to the bill, Telam and other local media reported.
“The officials talked with government-allied lawmakers about Article 7 of the bill, referring to payment jurisdiction, which might also include France,” Telam said.
Latin America’s No. 3 economy fell into default again in July after failing to reach an agreement with a group of hedge funds led by NML Capital Ltd and Aurelius Capital Management, which rejected the country’s 2005 and 2010 debt restructurings and which are suing for full payment on their bonds.
A U.S. court has banned Argentina from servicing restructured debt until it pays the litigating funds $1.3 billion plus interest.
Fernandez, who calls the funds “vultures”, says that to abide by the court ruling would spark additional legal claims and devastate the South American country’s finances. (Reporting by Hugh Bronstein and Walter Bianchi; Editing by Chizu Nomiyama)