March 3rd, 2023
1. Opening of Ordinary Sessions 2023 in the Congress of the Nation
President Alberto Fernández inaugurated the 141st ordinary session of the National Congress. In this context, the Argentine president gave a speech in which he reviewed several topics, highlighting the 40th anniversary of the return to democracy, the achievements during his administration, and the challenges ahead of the 2023 elections. Regarding the balance of his administration, he emphasized economic recovery, highlighting the 5.4% growth recorded in 2022, added to the 10.3% recorded during 2021. He also mentioned that in 2022 industrial activity grew 4.5% compared to 2021, and that “industrial employment reached the highest level since June 2018, accumulating 29 consecutive months of expansion, and registering more than 86 thousand new jobs compared to December 2019”. On the other hand, he criticized the courts’ intervention in the percentage of co-participation for the City of Buenos Aires, mentioning: “The interference of the Judicial Branch in the budget execution is inadmissible. It exceeds its powers, forgets the jurisprudential rule that recognizes ‘non-judicially political issues’ and jeopardizes the redistributive logic of the Federal Co-participation Law, causing severe damage to the balance of public accounts”. Finally, he praised the management of the current Minister of Economy of the Nation, Sergio Massa, and took time to pay tribute to veterans of the Malvinas War, human rights advocates, beneficiaries of social policies, as well as entrepreneurs and health professionals.
Haz clic para acceder al informe del discurso de apertura de sesiones ordinarias 2023: Apertura de Sesiones Ordinarias 2023
Click here to access the report of the opening speech of the Ordinary Sessions 2023: Opening of Ordinary Legislative Sessions 2023
2. Massive power outage in Argentina
On March 1st, at 3:59 p.m., there was a sequential disconnection of the 3 High Voltage Lines that link the General Rodríguez Transformer Station with the Litoral, which affected 40% of the country’s users. The incident caused outages in Buenos Aires, Mendoza, Santa Fe, Córdoba, San Juan, and the south of the Argentine northwest. The Undersecretary of Electric Energy of the Nation, Santiago Yanotti, mentioned that the interruption of the electric service was caused by a fire in the countryside that disturbed the high voltage line that supplies energy to a large part of the country. On Wednesday, the Minister of Economy of the Nation, Sergio Massa, asked the courts of Campana to investigate whether or not the fires were intentional. At 7:09 p.m., the 500 kV transmission system and all its service lines were running , and operators were concluding the works in the regional transmission systems that could still be affected.
Página 12: Apagón masivo en Argentina: las hipótesis de la investigación sobre el incendio y cuántos usuarios siguen sin luz
3. Agreement between Argentina and the IMF: Change in targets
In February, the technical teams of the Argentine Ministry of Economy and the International Monetary Fund (IMF) reviewed the results of the last quarter of 2022 and the projections for the first quarter of 2023 of the Extended Facilities Agreement. First, given over-achievement of the goals on reserves, tax collection, and treasury financing during the last quarter of 2022, a disbursement of 5.4 billion dollars is projected for the end of March. Secondly, the projections for the first quarter of 2023 would seem to fall short of the established objectives, because the deficit of the public accounts would turn out to be higher than expected and the accumulation of assets of the Central Bank of Argentina is lower than expected, a situation mainly caused by the drought in the agricultural sector that affects exports. For this reason, the Ministry of Economy of the Nation proposed to the IMF Board of Directors a new reserves target per quarter for the whole year, that will be announced in the next few days.
Ámbito Financiero: Acuerdo con el FMI: se oficializa el tercer cambio en un año y el Gobierno celebra una compra de dólares
Infobae: Tras la negociación, el FMI anuncia la nueva meta de acumulación de dólares y le dará aire a las reservas
4. Tax collection increased 82.3% year-on-year
The Ministry of Economy announced on a press release from March 1st tax collection in February amounted to $2.1 billion. The collection represents an increase of 82.3% year-on-year, although the figure was affected by the performance of taxes associated with foreign trade, due to the impact of the drought in the agricultural sector. The taxes that presented interannual variations above the average were: Value Added Tax (VAT) (106.1%), Social Security System (103.2%), Credits and Debits in Current Account (101.1%), P.A.I.S. Tax (95.1%), Personal Property (94.5%) and Profits (91.4%). In turn, taxes below this average were Import Duties and Statistical Tax (47.9%), Fuels (37.5%), and Export Duties (-55.9%).
Ministerio de Economía: Recaudación tributaria de febrero 2023
Argentina.gob: En el mes de febrero, la recaudación tributaria nacional ascendió a $2.126.338 millones
5. G20 Foreign Ministers’ Summit in India
Santiago Cafiero, Minister of Foreign Affairs of the Nation, participated this Thursday in the inaugural ceremony of the G20 Foreign Ministers’ Summit at the Rashtrapati Bhavan Cultural Center (RBCC) in India. During his visit, Cafiero held a meeting with Subrahmanyam Jaishankar, his Indian counterpart, where “they ratified the intention to continue deepening the Strategic Partnership between both nations, which recently had a particular boost, by advancing in cooperation issues in the energy sector, satellite science and technology, and space and nuclear matters, in which there is a great potential.” The recent agreement between YPF and ONGC Videsh Limited, a subsidiary of Oil and Natural Gas Corporation Ltd. (ONGC), India’s national oil and gas company, was also mentioned. It is worth mentioning that, in 2022, the bilateral exchange between Argentina and India reached 6.4 billion dollars. On the other hand, heCafiero also met with the Minister of Foreign Affairs of Great Britain, James Cleverly, to whom he notified the “end” of the so-called Foradori-Duncan agreement, a document that had been signed in 2016 during the presidency of Mauricio Macri, because it was considered that it made concessions to the interests of the United Kingdom regarding the exploitation of natural resources in the Malvinas Islands.
Ministerio de Relaciones Exterior, Comercio Internacional y Culto: Cafiero junto al canciller de la India impulsaron acuerdos energéticos y de tecnología satelital
La Nación: Malvinas: Santiago Cafiero le notificó al canciller británico el “fin” del acuerdo Foradori-Duncan