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PR gov: Goal is to postpone debt payments for 'years'

Puerto Rico Gov. Alejandro Garcia Padilla delivers his state of the Commonwealth address at the Capitol building in San Juan on April 30, 2015.
Puerto Rico Gov. Alejandro Garcia Padilla delivers his state of the Commonwealth address at the Capitol building in San Juan on April 30, 2015.

Puerto Rico Gov. Alejandro Garcia Padilla on Monday called for a reform process and repayment delays as the island struggles to meet its debt obligations.

In prepared remarks, he noted that Puerto Rico seeks to reach a moratorium with bondholders and hold off on making some debt payments for "years." Garcia Padilla said the commonwealth needed a restructuring plan to repay its $73 billion in debt.

Garcia Padilla also called on the U.S. government to extend the Chapter 9 bankruptcy code to include the island. His comments come as the island's economic and fiscal situation grow more dire and concerns increase among its bondholders and investors, who are also digesting fiscal problems in Greece.

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Garcia Padilla recently set off fears by calling Puerto Rico's debt "unpayable." On Monday, he expanded on its ability to meet the obligations, saying it does not generate enough income to afford them.

In implementing measures to cut costs, Garcia Padilla would not endorse minimum wage cuts, he added.

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Reuters contributed to this report