Tue. Feb 18th, 2020

Hernán Lacunza will be the new Minister of Finance of Argentina

The current head of the Economy portfolio of the government of the province of Buenos Aires, Hernán Lacunza, will be the new Minister of Finance of Argentina after the resignation of Nicolás Dujovne, government sources confirmed to Efe.

Dujovne presented his resignation in a letter addressed to the Argentine president, Mauricio Macri, after the financial earthquake unleashed last week in local markets in an adverse reaction of investors to the defeat of the ruling party in the primaries last Sunday.

The Argentine Government has not informed until now when it will be the inauguration of Lacunza, who has a degree in Economics and before directing the Buenos Aires portfolio of the area he served as general manager of the Central Bank, and of the City Bank.

In his letter, Dujovne said he resigned convinced that, under the circumstances, the management led by Macri "needs a significant renewal in the economic area."

"I consider that my resignation is consistent with belonging to a government and political space that listens to people, and acts accordingly," he added.

Dujovne said there have been "achievements in reducing the deficit and public spending, in reducing distortion taxes in the provinces, in recovering federalism."

And that, "without a doubt, we have made mistakes, which we never hesitate to recognize and did our best to correct," he said.

"I hope that our beloved country can finally twist a course of decades of failures and achieve the objective of economic development and poverty elimination," he said in his resignation letter.

Dujovne, who was at the forefront of the Treasury portfolio since January 2017, had no public appearances since the beginning last Monday of the new financial crisis, which made Argentine assets collapse and strongly appreciate the US dollar against the local currency .

Local media reported since last Thursday rumors about an imminent departure from Dujovne, who was in charge of the Ministry of Finance at a complex time for the Argentine economy that, after growing 2.7% in 2017, went into recession In April 2018, with a succession of foreign exchange shocks that were soon spread to all sectors of the activity.

In the midst of the crisis, Dujovne negotiated and sealed with the International Monetary Fund (IMF) a three-year agreement for financial assistance for 56.3 billion dollars, under the commitment of a strong fiscal adjustment.

GDP fell 2.5% in 2018 and, according to the latest official data available, economic activity accumulated a year-on-year fall of 3.1% in the first five months of the year.

The recession is combined with high inflation, of 47% in 2018, with a cumulative increase in the first seven months of this year of 25.1% and that experts predict that it could be around 50% this year from instability unleashed in the last days.

According to analysts and a large part of the political spectrum, this scenario of recession and high inflation, with rising poverty and unemployment rates, have greatly influenced the electoral setback suffered in Sunday's primaries by President Mauricio Macri, who aspires to the re-election in the elections of October 27.

The head of state has adopted in recent days a series of economic measures to mitigate the effects of the financial catastrophe, which hits the purchasing power of Argentines.

Dujovne has been absent from these announcements, whose technical details were provided by Interior Minister Rogelio Frigerio himself, and by Production and Labor, Dante Sica.

. (tagsToTranslate) Hernan (t) Lacunza (t) minister (t) Treasury (t) Argentina

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