On 5 November 2013, the Argentinian Central Bank (BCRA) issued Communication "A" 5493, introducing an amendment to the existing laws regulating the credit issuance of domestic banks for major export companies.
The intention of this measure is to force domestic export companies to finance themselves outside of Argentina in order to get Pesos back to the domestic market. Furthermore the measure seeks to enable the BCRA to sell foreign currency for Pesos on the Argentine foreign exchange market in order to restore the BCRA's reservces.
The introduced changes include:
- Definition of "Major export companies": (i) 75% of total sales in the previous year need to be carried out in exports of goods and services (taking into consideration local markets and exports); (ii) maintained total amount of financings in Argentine Pesos (ARS), exceeding the amount of 200 million ARS.
- Excluded from the calculations in paragraph 1) are: (i) sales carried out with related customers, expect for sales of goods made to distribution companies, commercializing in the local market and (ii) industrial exports included in international complementary agreements, which Argentina is part of.
- In case that the total amount of outstanding loans granted to a company exceeds the amount of 50 million ARS, clients of local financial entities must file an affidavit, determining whether or not they are included in the "Major export company" category. Affidavits shall be effective for a duration of 30 calendar days. Furthermore, an accounting certificate must be filed if: (i) the total debt of the company exceeds the amount of 200 million ARS; (ii) the client states in its affidavit that it is not included in the "Major export company" category. The accounting certificates shall be effective for 90 calendar days.
- The local funding for "Major export companies" will be limited to 0.3% of the total amount of ARS deposits (net of the minimum cash requirement) and the liquid equity of the financial entity granting the financing. The new Communication amends the 15% maximum limit previously in force.
- In case the amount of outstanding loans granted to a "Major export company" exceeds the maximum lending ability described in paragraph 4), the BCRA hast to approve all new funding granted to such a company by any national financial entity.
- The BCRA is allowed to modify both the amount of allowed financings, which is used to establish the membership in the "Major export companies" category, and the percentage to determine the borrowing ability. Finally, the Communication provides that id does not cover foreign currency financing.