Argentina Still Won’t See Investment Boom in 2017, Expert Says

By: Raquel García - @venturaG79 - Jan 6, 2017, 6:18 am
Argentina Still Won't See Investment Boom
The former Minister said investment won’t come until later in 2017. (Apertura)

EspañolFormer Argentinian Viceminister of the Economy Orlando Ferreres said he thinks conditions for massive investment in Argentina have not yet arrived, though he believes the country’s economic recovery is “under way.”

The ex-official said in an interview with financial news site Ámbito that he did not expect investments to happen in 2016, and for 2017 to be more of the same.

“No one is coming,” he said. “Argentina is qualified as a B-. Who comes to a B- country?”

The economist explained that the investment process must go through several stages: “First, banks buy shares, then bonds and in the third phase comes (purchases and mergers of companies) lasting two or three years, which then leads to the creation of new companies.”

He said he believes the purchases and mergers of companies phase will begin in Argentina in 2017, but from the middle of the year onward. “When you see how the surveys come, the investors start talking,” he said.

“Today I have calls to buy companies but they stopped, there’s nothing concrete, they said we will wait” the ex-viceminister said.

According to him, industrial sectors and textiles, among others, are most interested in investment.

Ferreres said 2016 was recessive because the real wage fell five percent and purchasing power was five percent lower, the investment did not expand sufficiently, nor did exports.

“There was no way to grow,” he said. “2016 was a transition year, there were no elections, no money for anyone.”

According to Ferreres, the success of money laundering is not only due to Mauricio Macri. There is a tendency in the world to limit tax evasion.

“In the US it’s a mix, there are banks that say nothing, others that say if you’re going to declare, leave it here … and people will declare it. It’s not a product of Macri alone, it’s a product of the general conditions in the world that we want to limit the black market. Even here there is US $400 million in the black.”

Ferreres said he believes that a consolidated public expenditure of US $105 billion “could be sustained without a problem in the long term.”

The ex-official said he thinks reducing current expenditure is also key. Currently, that figures stands at US $230 billion, according Ámbito.

“The minister lacks more public spending … Public spending on personnel, pensions and plans — that is what needs to be accommodated.”

“As Macri said, we are going to be generating investments, first with public works that will occupy people and secondly through purchases from companies that will also occupy people and third, through new projects.”

He added that though the process will take years, it is necessary to “prepare on the ground” for that change.

Source: Ámbito.

Raquel García Raquel García

Raquel García is a Venezuelan journalist with over 16 years of experience in digital outlets and radios. She currently lives in Buenos Aires, Argentina. Follow her @venturaG79.

Gasoline Protests in Mexico Continue Amid Price Spikes

By: Elena Toledo - @NenaToledo - Jan 5, 2017, 4:42 pm

EspañolWednesday, January 4 was the third day of protests to increase gasoline prices in Mexico as a result of the deregulation of the fuel market, and reportedly continued through Thursday. Violence reportedly escalated again. A policeman was killed during an attempted looting of a service station in Mexico City, according to the Public Security and Attorney General's office. Authorities reported that the police officer was hit by three vehicles that arrived at the gas station to carry out the assault. They are still investigating whether the robbery was related to looting and protests by the gas conflict, or if it was an isolated case. googletag.cmd.push(function() { googletag.display('div-gpt-ad-1459522593195-0'); }); At least 161 detainees were reported in the capital, of which 64 were accused of robbery and looting. There were already 250 arrests resulting from the riots. The Preventive Cybercrime Police of Mexico City reported that 1,501 accounts have been detected for promoting looting at Walmarts and other stores since January 1. The National Association of Self-Service Stores (ANTAD) said that some 79 establishments were looted and more than 170 were forced to close before the regular time due to fear of being invaded. Among the affected stores were Chedraui, Elektra, Coppel, Bodega Aurrera, Cotsco, Walmart, Soriana, Comercial Mexicana and Oxxo. Authorities disputed a rumor spread on social media that there would be a curfew enforced in some areas of Mexico. However, Army and Navy officers patrolled the streets of various municipalities at night. In the Mexican capital, approximately 250 businesses closed their doors for fear of vandalism. However, there were no violent incidents reported in the area. In Mexico City, there were a reported 38 protests, 16 blockades to gas stations, 15 highway blockades and 25 robberies in commercial centers. Sources: El Universal, Milenio.

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