NEW YORK, Feb 26 (Reuters) - Settlement talks between Argentina and its main U.S. holdout creditors continue with progress being made, the court-appointed mediator said in a statement on Friday.
"No Agreement in Principle has been reached or signed as yet, but progress has been made. All concerned are working diligently," said Daniel Pollack, managing partner of McCarter & English, who was appointed Special Master by U.S. District Judge Thomas Griesa to mediate settlement talks.
"Senior-most officials for the Republic and principals for the hedge funds are personally involved," he said.
Earlier this week, a lawyer representing NML Capital, an affiliate of hedge fund Elliott Management, as well as other leading holdouts such as Aurelius Capital Management, said an agreement in principle on economic terms of roughly $5 billion was reached last week.
The statement by the lawyer, Matthew McGill, was made during a related hearing before a federal appeals court.
Pollack later criticized the statement as a violation of an understanding of confidentiality between the parties.
Ending the litigation would be an historic step for Argentina, which has battled creditors who refused to accept the terms of earlier debt restructurings in 2005 and 2010. They have been fighting in the U.S. courts for well over a decade.
Argentina defaulted on roughly $100 billion in sovereign debt in early 2002.
Along with a slew of reforms enacted by President Mauricio Macri since his December inauguration, a comprehensive pact with holdout creditors could allow Argentina to issue debt in the global sovereign bond market and stop relying on inflationary central bank financing of its budget, Wall Street analysts have said. (Reporting by Daniel Bases and Tariro Mzezewa; Editing by Bernadette Baum)