Serge Massa: "Our goal is to grow with inclusion and we came to work for that"

Wednesday, August 03, 2022 | 8:28 p.m.

After 8:00 p.m., the new minister of the portfolio, Sergio Massa, appeared in the conference room of the Ministry of Economy. He entered accompanied by what will be his work cabinet with the aim of publicizing the first measures that he will apply from the place that President Alberto Fernández designated him to be part of his government. From there, he marked his “roadmap”, which, according to him, he will continue to write in the coming days with more measures.

He opened the talk by demystifying the idea of ​​being a “savior, silver bullet or super minister” and affirmed that the unification of areas under the economy portfolio was decided with the aim of “having a better strategy before the world in which we live”. This strategy has several objectives, among them that of transforming resources into wealth, because according to him he stated “Argentina is not a rich country, it is a country with riches”.

Massa explained that his management will focus on two axes, the principles and the engines of the Argentine economy. Regarding the principles, he mentioned that they are fiscal order, trade surplus, strength of reserves and development with inclusion. As for the engines for this, he pointed to investment, production, exports and the defense of the internal market.

And as for the challenges, he affirmed that although “there are several open fronts and they will all be attacked”, inflation and loss of income are the two central challenges to be tackled. To face these two central challenges, he affirmed that “he will travel a path of inclusion that allows transforming resources into wealth.” All of this “cannot be done in a day, it takes time”, he clarified.

The new Minister of Economy listed a series of measures that will be implemented as of this Thursday, and that will be the first of a series of measures that will continue to be announced in the coming days, according to what he said.

Retirements, salaries, plans and credits for SMEs

Among Sergio Massa’s announcements, aimed at cushioning the blow that inflation gives to the pockets of Argentines, he announced a series of measures aimed at retirees, workers and Small and Medium Enterprises, as well as businesses.

About the retirements announced that on August 10 the retirement mobility index will be announced with a reinforcement to help retirees overcome the damage caused by inflation. Also

For the workers He indicated that “we are going to convene business entities and workers on Thursday of next week in order to ensure a mechanism that allows workers in the private sector to recover income, which includes the improvement of family allowances.”

In regards to the plans indicated that “we will face a policy of reordering social plans during the next 12 months, focusing on 3 axes. Return to the labor market, strengthening of cooperatives and protection in situations of vulnerability”. And he reported that on August 15 an audit to be carried out by the universities begins. “Whoever does not comply with it will receive the suspension of the plan. In parallel, the liquidation will be crossed with the ANSES databases. Our idea of ​​the country is that the plan be the emergency, and the work permanent”, he affirmed.

About him credit, announced the unification under the Credito Argentino program of all credits offered by the National State. “We started a unification of the credit programs in a single line, which is called CREDITO ARGENTINO, and which will unify all credit promotion policies for the productive sectors, SMEs and commerce, a program for a total of $400 billion because We are convinced that Argentine work and growth must be sustained,” he explained.

Fiscal order, surplus and reserves

Massa announced a series of measures aimed at tax order. There he explained that the 2.5 deficit goal established by the budget will be met; that Treasury Advances will not be used for the remainder of the year; and that governs the freezing of the state plant for all sectors of the centralized national public administration.

At that point, he also announced measures related to energy subsidies and water consumption, for places where the national government contributes to this service. He affirmed there that there are four million Argentine households that, by not registering in the subsidy register, “resigned from using the subsidies.” He then explained that among the almost 10 million households that did request the subsidy “we are going to promote consumption savings”, this by only subsidizing 400kw per month. “We cannot continue with a scheme in which whoever spends the most receives the most subsidy,” he asserted.

In regards to fiscal surplus He indicated that the regimes for the sectors of agribusiness, mining, hydrocarbons due to increased production, and the knowledge economy will be promoted by Decree of Necessity and Urgency (DNU). In addition, cases of under-invoicing of exports and over-invoicing of imports will be reported to the Argentine justice system and the anti-money laundering unit of the United States.

It also announced the launch of a credit program at promotional rates, and a guarantee scheme for leading exporters. We want to sell more Argentine work to the world. And the implementation of a foreign trade traceability system for greater control and transparency in the use of foreign currency for imports.

For him strengthening of reserves announced an advance of exports, with the value chains of fishing, agriculture, mining and others, “which will enter in the next 60 days for a total of 5,000 million dollars, which will increase the reserves of the Central Bank ”. Also a disbursement of 1.2 billion dollars with international organizations for current programs. New program with CAF with a disbursement of an additional 750 million dollars.

He confirmed that there are four 4 Repo offers to strengthen reserves and repurchase sovereign debt. 3 from international financial institutions and a sovereign fund. And he reported that this Wednesday he had a first working meeting with the IMF together with his team to continue with the planned disbursements.

Finally, he left a series of final considerations that began by announcing that the second section of the Nestor Kirchner gas pipeline is going to be put out to tender. In addition, a program will be launched to train 70,000 new programmers in the next 12 months. And that a voluntary exchange will be launched for maturities in pesos in the next 90 days, which will end on Tuesday, for which we already have adherence commitments of more than 60%.

In addition, he summoned “Congress, to request the rapid treatment of the laws that benefit Construction, Bio / Nanotechnology, agribusiness and the automotive industry in tax terms. Because they are great generators of employment and growth. And to the Liaison Table, to sit down and work together for the development of that sector that is so powerful that Argentine producers make up”.

Thus, Massa took the first step in his management at the head of the Ministry of Economy, a management that previously generated enormous expectations, and in which he will have to work tirelessly to be able to comply with them, in order to ensure that this process that is being carried out today It begins and ends successfully, as the President of the Nation Alberto Fernández predicted when Sergio Massa was sworn in, a couple of hours before all these announcements.

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