BUENOS AIRES (Reuters) - Argentina’s Mendoza province, famed for its bodegas and Malbec grapes grown in the shadows of the Andes, has formally launched a debt restructuring process after missing an initial payment deadline on a 2024 bond.
The regional government said in a statement on Friday that it had opened an invitation to holders of around $590 million of the 2024 notes, which could see new debt instruments issued. The missed payment is still within a grace period.
The debt revamp is only a small sideshow as the South American country’s national government races to seal a deal to restructure around $65 billion in sovereign debt, but underscores how the provinces are also grappling with their own debt crises.
The larger province of Buenos Aires is also looking to restructure around $7 billion in foreign debt.
Argentina has been pummeled by stubborn inflation, sky-high interest rates and a biting recession, which is now being sharpened by the impact of the coronavirus pandemic.
Mendoza’s invitation will expire on June 16. The provincial government said it had engaged Credit Suisse Securities and AdCap Securities to help manage the invitation process.
Reporting by Adam Jourdan; Editing by Daniel Wallis