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Argentine Finance Minister Alfonso de Prat-Gay says the country is in a position to negotiate better terms for $10 billion in defaulted debt

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BUENOS AIRES, Argentina — Argentine Finance Minister Alfonso de Prat-Gay says the country is in a position to negotiate better terms for $10 billion in defaulted debt.

 The government began talks Wednesday with so-called holdout creditors in New York in hopes of getting what it describes as "fairer" terms. Prat-Gay says Argentina's main objective is to reduce punitive interest rates on part of the debt.

 The holdouts are a group of funds refusing to accept the terms of Argentina's debt restructurings in 2005 and 2010. They sued the country and won the right to recover the debt in full. 

Prat-Gay says the interest awarded by a U.S. judge "is extremely high" and in one case a fund that invested $1 million could get 10 times that amount.

Argentina defaulted on $100 billion in 2001.

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