The fundamental lesson of the Greek and Argentine debt restructurings is that regardless of whether a country issues debt under its own law or foreign law, there's no practical way to force a government to repay debt it doesn't want to pay, according to The Economist. "Although sovereigns that borrow abroad waive their immunity to litigation, their assets are mostly either out of the reach of foreign courts or protected by treaties," the magazine notes. "And when governments do default, borrowing costs typically return to normal in a couple of years."

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