Updated 04:21 PM EST, Tue, Jan 18, 2022

Creditors Extend Debt Deadline for Puerto Rico Electric Power Authority

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The debt deadline for Puerto Rico Electric Power Authority was extended for a few more days as creditors decided to provide a short reprieve to the country in an effort to restructure its $8.2 million debt.

The Associated Press said in a report published by Fox News Latino that the Puerto Rico Electric Power Authority confirmed the deadline extension from Friday to Tuesday.

Last week, the Puerto Rico's electric utility sealed a deal with insurance companies, bank lenders and bondholders to restructure its debt and ease payment terms for the country.

Bloomberg mentioned that the negotiations took more than a year before they were finalized. The bondholders also agreed last year to take the losses of 15 percent.

"This suggests it's possible to do it without Chapter 9. It suggests there is the possibility of negotiating with bondholders," said Governor Alejandro Garcia Padilla, highlighting that the US Congress should grant the public agencies of the US territory access to Chapter 9 federal bankruptcy reorganization.

He also said in the Associated Press report that a humanitarian crisis is possible after Congress did not extend Chapter 9 to the country.

 "By not acting now, Congress has opted to allow a U.S. commonwealth not pay its obligations and create chaos. Once more, Wall Street has shown its control over Congress; Wall Street is who controls Congress," he added.

According to Wall Street Journal, this agreement has not ye been approved by the board of the power authority. It is also expected to take effect only if the lawmakers in the country pass legislation to make the deal happen.

It added that Padilla has asked Congress to craft a "formal debt-restructuring process" for the country to help it and its residents recover from their financial losses.

Earlier, Padilla admitted that the country has run out of cash because of its $70 billion debt with the US Congress, who suggested two options for Puerto Rico to recover.

CNN Money said the first option presented by the U.S. legislative body is to offer the country "cash, tax cuts and oversight but no legal power," while the second one has no monetary offering, but gives the country the legal power for it to be able to restructure some of its debts.

With this two options at hand, The Hill noted that the country is more desperate to access Chapter 9, since it will result in easier negotiations with creditors.

The same report noted that this proposed solution would make pressures for policy reforms in the country weak.

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