February 28, 2020
1. Alberto Fernández to kick off regularly scheduled 2020 legislative activities
On Sunday, March 1st, President Alberto Fernández will open the 138th Period of Ordinary Congressional Sessions, as published in the Official Bulletin last Wednesday. The ceremony will take place at 11:30 at the Chamber of Deputies. There, the president will give a speech before the Legislative Assembly (comprised of deputies and senators) and both houses will officially commence activities. It is the first time President Fernández presides over the ceremony, following his inauguration on December 10th of last year. In his opening speech, it is expected he will offer a summary of the state of the country and make announcements regarding the administration and his government for the remainder of the year.
2. Economy Minister Martín Guzmán returns to Argentina after receiving nod from IMF and U.S. Treasury
Minister of Economy, Martín Guzmán, returned to Argentina on Wednesday following a pair of official visits to Saudi Arabia and the U.S., where he met with figures from the IMF, the U.S. Treasury and G20 member countries, receiving support for his economic program to make the debt renegotiation offer “sustainable.” Guzmán’s trip began last Friday in the Saudi capital of Riyadh, where he participated in the G20 Finance Ministers and Central Bank Governors Meeting, traveling to Washington D.C. and finally New York. The finance minister met with IMF authorities, bank executives and investment funds with Argentine bonds under foreign law and carried out talks regarding the conditions of the debt restructuring plan the government hopes to carry out over the coming days.
3. “Gondola law” to be debated today in Senate
In the leadup to the commencement of ordinary legislative sessions, and during the last extraordinary session of the Senate, the government hopes to sanction the “Gondola law” – which mandates the equal distribution of providers in supermarket displays – has already received approval in the Chamber of Deputies. The norm, which was included in last Friday’s extraordinary session by Vice President Cristina Fernández de Kirchner, was promoted by the executive branch.
4. Fernández administration continues international outreach
President Alberto Fernández held a telephone conversation with President-elect of Uruguay, Luis Lacalle Pou, where they analyzed bilateral relations and their regional integration strategy, also securing a meeting next week. On the other hand, U.S. Ambassador Jorge Argüello met in Washington with U.S. Secretary of State Mike Pompeo, to discuss topics of common interest, including a possible meeting between U.S. President Donald Trump and Argentine President Alberto Fernández.
5. Government suspends registration of agricultural exports
The Argentine government suspended the registration of agricultural exports on Wednesday, in anticipation of an increase in withholdings taxes on soy, which will increase by 3% to 33% – permitting the government to raise an additional USD $400 million annually. A statement released by the Secretary of Agricultural Markets informed that starting on Wednesday, registration of agricultural exports will cease. In this framework, leaders of the agricultural sector met yesterday with Agriculture Minister Luis Basterra.
Ámbito Financiero: Retenciones: el Gobierno suspendió el registro de exportaciones agrícolas