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BUENOS AIRES, Sept 9 (Reuters) - A majority of Argentina’s debt investors do not want to take up a government proposal to change the jurisdiction governing their bonds, Economy Minister Axel Kicillof told members of the country’s Congress on Tuesday.
The South American country last month unveiled plans to make payments on its foreign-held bonds locally and offer creditors the possibility of bringing their debt under Argentine law to skirt a U.S. court ruling that led to its latest default.
“It is not the wish of a majority of bondholders, as far as I know, to have a big change in the jurisdiction,” Kicillof told a number of Congressional committees.
Argentina defaulted in July after a U.S. court blocked an interest payment to holders of its restructured debt governed by U.S. law, ordering the government to settle first with a small group of U.S. hedge funds who spurned previous bond swaps and demand full payment.
The frozen coupon payment is still held by U.S. intermediary Bank of New York Mellon.
Kicillof told lawmakers the Buenos Aires government was open to suggestions from bondholders about where to make payments if investors were unhappy with its proposal of Nacion Fideicomisos, a unit of state-controlled Banco Nacion.
Lawyers say Argentina’s proposed debt restructuring plan faces massive legal and logistical hurdles that mean it may never get off the ground, even if it is approved by lawmakers in Congress, which is controlled by allies of President Cristina Fernandez. (Reporting by ALejandro Lifschitz; Writing by Richard Lough; Editing by Diane Craft and Gunna Dickson)