13 Oct 2012

Argentine Navy ship still held in Ghana

10:13 am on 13 October 2012

A court in Ghana has refused to free an Argentine Navy ship seized in a debt dispute involving the nation's creditors.

The Libertad, a training ship on a tour of Africa, was detained on 3 October at the request of NML Capital, which is suing Buenos Aires for defaulting on its loans.

Lawyers argued as a military vessel it enjoyed immunity. But the judge said Argentina had waived immunity as part of its loan deal.

The BBC reports NML Capital is a subsidiary of Elliot Capital Management, a US hedge fund which was one of Argentina's former creditors.

Argentina defaulted on debt of more than $US100 billion in 2001 and 2002. Most of the loans were restructured in 2005 and 2010, giving creditors around 30% of their money back.

However, BBC reports some creditors, including Elliot, chose pursue the Argentine government through the courts in order to recover the full amount.