Support Argentina's fight against Vulture Funds
Sign the global statement of support for Argentina as it takes on vulture funds in New York.
Argentina under attack
The ten-year battle between the government of Argentina and US speculators came to a head in a New York court on 27 February, in a case the Financial Times has called 'the sovereign debt trial of the century'. A ruling in the case is now expected in April.
Argentina's economy is being held to ransom by a small handful of very wealthy speculators - so-called 'vulture funds'. They bought up billions of dollars worth of Argentina's debt in the early 2000s when Argentina's economy was on its knees and its people were suffering horrendous poverty - and defaulting on its debts was the only option.
The vulture funds speculated on Argentina's crisis, buying debt in the hope that the country would go bankrupt, and refusing to join the vast majority of Argentina's 'creditors' in negotiating a reduction in the value of their debt (even though they only paid a fraction of the value of it in the first place). For more than a decade they have hounded Argentina for repayments - late last year going so far as to unilaterally seize its naval vessel, The Libertad, which spent three months detained in a port in Ghana. More >>
Judgement Day in New York
In November 2012 a New York court ruled that Argentina was obliged to pay $1.3 billion to vulture fund NML Capital, a subsidiary of hedge fund Elliot Associates which is owned by billionaire Paul Singer. It stated that if Argentina fails to pay this then it would have been judged to have defaulted once more on its debts. On 27 February 2013 the New York courts heard final arguments on Argentina's appeal against this verdict - a judgement is expected within two weeks.
We believe that there is no ethical justification for Argentina making this payment. These ‘vulture funds’ never lent money to Argentina. The debt that NML gambled on was bought cheaply, representing the extreme risk they were taking. They took that risk in the hope Argentina would pay them off rather than fight - and they lost.
Many of the debts Argentina owed had been continuously recycled since the time of the brutal military junta which ruled the country from 1976 to 1983. These debts have been effectively declared ‘odious’ by Federal Judge Jorge Ballester in 2000. Forty years ago, financial speculators profited from death and repression at the hands of Argentina’s dictatorship. Today NML and Elliot Associates seek to profit from the economic misery of Argentina’s people.
Sign the statement
Add your name to the global statement of support now. We will deliver a copy to Argentina's Ambassador following the verdict. (Feel free to change the 'country' if you're not in the UK)