Archive for 31 agosto 2010

ADIOS A LAS ARMAS

31 agosto, 2010

 

Este nada oríginal nombre para la charla (LAS ARMAS ¿ A DIOS? hubiera sido mas conforme con nuestro sentir), surge a raíz del mensaje de nuestra colega electrónica www.labotellaalmar.com que en una charla agradece las felicitaciones por cumplir diez años, de sus admiradores lectores.

En los últimos años nos distanciamos de su línea editorial, porque en plena globalización, cuasi terminada a los efectos de estimar que ya no es posible una guerra mundial del tamaño de las dos grandes del siglo XX, creemos que los militarismos regionales son obsoletos, amén de desproporcionados, cuando no arcaicos.

Nos hace recordar a las películas de cow-boys, cuando paulatinamente se fue prohibiendo la portación de armas, e incluso los héroes mas recios debían hacer entrega de sus poderosas Colts 45 a la entrada del Saloon como requisito indispensable, y el propio cantinero era el custodio. Obviamente, por instrucciones del Sheriff y suponemos ahora que lo pensamos, porque algún democrático gobierno Estatal empezó con la excelente idea (la vida bien vale depositar las armas para que los infantiles no las malutilicen) y ello se propagó, según Hollywood.

Por otra parte, los yanquis – que son prácticos -siguen sosteniendo la teoría de que la gente puede estar armada para defenderse de los bandidos, ya que eran tierras enormes y despobladas, donde además habian indios hostiles y fieras peligrosas. Y no es una teoría caprichosa, sino muy sensata desde el punto de vista Constitucional: ellos hicieron al Estado (municipio, o Estado o incluso a la Unión) para protegerse a si mismos, the people, y no para que el Estado les prohiba cosas fundamentales, como la autoprotección.

CULTURA DIFERENTE

Nuestra cultura hispanoamericana, donde al Amo tenemos que pedirle permiso para todo, y él puede hacernos todo lo que quiera, incluso robarnos los depósitos de nuestros bancos, y nuestra Corte Suprema dice que es Constitucional, difiere entonces de la del Norte. Pero de hecho, sigue mucha gente armada en Argentina. No solo los bandidos, los mas armados, sino tambien los particulares, y de tanto en tanto vemso que un honorable vecino ha triunfado en el duelo contra los bandidos, en su propio hogar, pero ciertamente constituyen la excepción. La mayoría de los medios (quizás mentirosos como dicen los K o quizas tan solo exagerados) indicarían que la relación de triunfos de bandidos sobre particulares es grosera. Los malos ganan por goleada y asesinan a discreción, de modo que el pueblo argentino tiene a la inseguridad como el máximo temor, y los gobernantes son los que reciben las bofetadas.

Hasta la Corte Suprema se queja permanentemente ante los medios, pero lo cierto es que el delito con armas de fuego parece aumentar, y nadie vislumbra solución alguna. Para colmo, existen teorías garantistas, de que a los menores hay que aceptarles muchas cosas que en el Norte no se les permite. Tenemos la sospecha que un niño de doce años portando una pistola 45, eleva a 57 su edad de peligrosidad en tanto que si usa una 9 mm tan solo ascendería a 21 años (12 + 9) lo que igualmente lo convierte en mayor de edad y peligroso. Esperamos que los miembros de la Corte Suprema no se vean enfrentados por estos bandiditos armados, pero que al menos en sus numerosas (excesivas a nuestro gusto) conferencias, intenten contemplar que un menor armado se convierte en una peligrosa fiera, y que la juventud debe ser controlada con el ejemplo de que los delincuentes armados van presos efectivamente.

LOS OTROS ARMADOS

La nostalgia por los “patriotas” que ya casi no existen en número suficiente, como podemos leer desde nuestro citado periódico electronico del doctor Cosme Beccar Varela, es algo distinto, porque subyace en los lectores, y consiguientemente en la línea editorial, la teoría de que los militares son el sostén de la patria y ellos deben impedir que  Dios, la Bandera y la Fe sean atacados, de modo que las Fuerzas Armadas vendrían a ser los Custodios permanentes que tenemos la gente, los preceptores guardianes, por la simple razón de que siempre fue así en el mundo hispano.

La experiencia argentina, donde los bienintencionados (o no) militares desde 1930 hasta Malvinas) se convirtieron en traidores a la Constitución (que nuestros antepasados intentaron copiar de la norteamericana, pero la cosa no les salió del todo bien por ser culturas diferentes) muestra que a diferencia de dicho periódico, nosotros celebremos el hecho superador de no necesitar mas un ejército para protegernos de los países vecinos. Por varios motivos, pero especialmente, porque la desproporción entre las armas de nuestros hermanos americanos del Norte y los restantes es suficiente para desalentar guerrillas barriales “infantiles” entre paises todavía en gestación. No hace tanto, menos de un mes, vimos la payasada del simpático presidente Chávez, alertando a sus tropas sobre un supuesto ataque , y en el acto tuvieron los K que salir corriendo, a ver si llegaban antes que otros a sacarse la foto de mediadores entre Colombia y Venezuela, un espectáculo circense que a nosotros nos da lástima y rabia, porque todo ese show lo paga el pueblo Argentino en lo que se refiere a los gastos K, mientras nuestros Presidentes suponen que ganan votos.

Estamos convencidos que la enorme mayoria nacional y popular de los argentinos sigue queriendo a nuestras gloriosas fuerzas Armadas que tanto hicieron en el pasado, precisamente porque actuaron bien en el pasado. Y que para convencer a la mayoría de que hoy son necesarias, es preciso inventar un enemigo externo, y hacer lo que se conoce como “apelación sentimental al patriotismo”, un sistema muy útil para los dictadores bandidos, que por suerte en América, desde Alaska a Tierra del Fuego, tenemos que tomar com tal: una payasada, o una propaganda política incorrecta.

NOSTALGIA MILITARISTA

Adiós a las Armas era el nombre de una gran película que creo haber visto de chico y nada me acuerdo, pero el nombre nos sirvió para esta charla. Las armas que hoy usa el mundo son otras, comenzando por el trabajo organizado de gente capacitada. Ya de hecho aviones no tripulados pueden derrotar a países bandidos, sin que los pilotos deban salir del living room de sus propias casas, un sistema que se está implementando con éxito en USA y donde incluso intervienen pilotos de países aliados, para trabajar en equipo.

Menos pilotos, ninguno volando, son el arma del presente, que permite controlar a los países atrasados cuyos gobernantes hacen apelaciones al patriotismo nazionalista para perpetuarse en el poder.

Nos ¿reíamos? cuando un fanático lector de la botellaalmar dias o semanas atrás, le escribía al director algo así como “nosotros, los derechistas”, y estaba describiendo con real claridad y precisión la posición ideológica suya, que fue tácitamente aceptada por el Director.

Porque la “derecha” (o ultra derecha católica nazionalista de Uriburu) que nos deshizo la Constitución en 1930 e implantó al fascismo inicial y que logró implantar el dirigismo económico que persiste y nos hunde en relación con los demás países que tienen libertad, es algo “no positivo” como diría el ingeniero Cobos. Pero como decimos nosotros, es una soberana estupidez, porque hay que ser muy tarado e idiota para declararle la guerra a los británicos (que es lo mismo que a la OTAN, USA incluida) y nuestros militares lo hicieron, aprovechando que no nos dejaban votar.

La amnesia nada tiene que ver con los “patriotas”, su problema es el fundamentalismo nacionalista equivalente al fanatismo religioso. En nombre de Dios se han cometido enormas barbaridades, y a nuestro favor tenemos la confesión (indirecta, pero confesión al fin) de que la inquisición fue un sistema genocida serial, el papa Polaco pidió perdón en nombre de la Iglesia Católica, lo que para nosotros significó admitir que de Santa nada tuvo si fue genocida, porque Dios es vida, y no muerte.

Nuestro amigo J.Z. , lector de dicho diario, nos comenta que quinientos años atrás era normal que existiera la inquisición, como lo era entonces la esclavitud. Pero le replicamos (personalmente, porque somos muy amigos) que si alguien propone la esclavitud hoy, 2010, como sistema normal, es un tarado, y por eso los esclavistas lo ocultan.

En cuanto al fundamentalismo religioso armado, vemos que existe, aunque ya no en manos de la Iglesia Católica, que gracias a Dios fue desarmada y derrotada militarmente en su faceta “Estados Pontificios”, con lo cual se pudo unificar en 1870 circa al hasta entonces en nombre de Dios sojuzgado pueblo italiano.

Los curas a las parroquias, a los militares, mejor tenerlos en menor cantidad, y desarmados, cosa que sirvan para ocasiones festivas, tipo los Granaderos y algunos otros tradicionales cuerpos, como Patricios. Y en cambio, los muchachos con vocación de servir a la patria, que no elijan hacerlo desde el trabajo privado productivo o el estudio esforzado, que se incorporen a un cuerpo de seguridad serio y eficaz para prevenir y combatir el delito.

Tal como lo viene haciendo desde la fundación de Buenos Aires por Juan de Garay nuestra maravillosa Policía Federal Argentina, un ejemplo de servicio a la Patria, que tiene excesivas bajas (caídos en el cumplimiento del deber) para contener la inseguridad al máximo posible. Dentro de lo que le permite nuestro esquema de país desgobernado, donde el desejemplo proviene de la Presidencia para abajo desde hace ochenta años.

Si alguna nostalgia tienen los lectores nuestros o de cualquier otro medio, por “patriotas” que nos defiendan, les reiteramos que por suerte los tenemos en la PFA, vivos y cada vez mas organizados. Hasta tienen su propio instituto Universitario, que es una maravilla en proceso permanente de evolución. No hace falta ir muy lejos en Buenos Aires para ver sus instalaciones, en la calle Rosario al 500, desde donde la juventud se capacita a primerisimo nivel internacional para defendernos y esos son los PATRIOTAS cuya presencia aparentemente desconoce el mencionado diario electrónico.

ADIOS A LAS ARMAS, pero la Policía Federal Argentina está presente siempre, las veinticuatro horas del día, y los bandidos aquí ciertamente no pueden superarla. Porque, entre otras cosas, trabajan en estrecho contacto con otras policías de países hermanos, incluyendo las de los países partidarios de la libertad, con los que hasta entrenan conjuntamente, de modo que lo que vemos por T.V. en las series de Hollywood respecto de la policÍa yanqui se repite aquí en simultaneo: las policías todas de los países que aspiramos a la libertad trabajan en equipo, y en Argentina LA POLICIA es obviamente la gloriosa Federal Argentina  que comenzó con Garay, es decir, que surgió en 1580 y todavía nos sigue protegiendo a todos los argentinos, y ayuda a nuestras Policías Provinciales.

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¿ALGUIEN RINDE CUENTAS?

30 agosto, 2010

 

Desde chico he oído (mas de sesenta años) que los gobernantes argentinos no rinden cuentas documentadas de su gestión, porque me tocó vivir una época donde la Constitución había sido destruida por el movimiento fascista nazionalista que prefería los Obispos y los Fusiles a la libertad de los pueblos evolucionados y civilizados, que llegaron a la cúspide con la Constitución de los Estados Unidos de América, una forma revolucionaria de que cada ciudadano de la Union sea protegido tanto por su Estado como por el Gobierno Federal, de modo que el sistema fundamentalmente sirvió para proteger a la gente de sus propios gobernantes, que históricamente abusaron de sus gobernados. Como se sigue haciendo en la mayor parte del mundo, y obviamenente en Argentina.

Existe una alianza – expresa y tacita o alternativa – entre la derecha (los amos del país) que no difiere del resto de los estados primitivos. Porque los humanos ambicionamos el Poder, y para no existen otros límites que los que nos oponen las fuerzas opuestas (tipo Thatcher en Malvinas) o los que los amos les conceden a sus mercenarios incondicionales, que son pocos, aunque bien pagados, para permitir que el Presidente de turno tenga cuasi impunidad, y sus amigos también.

Desde 1930, cuando abandonamos el sistema sensato norteamericano para adoptar el modelo nazi fascista germánico militarista y clerical, entramso en caída libre, hasta hoy. Y no levantamos caberza. Estos ochenta años cambiaron la mentalidad de lso dirigentes políticos mayoritarios,y la gente ya no les cree, porque los considera incapaces, corruptos y soberbios,y tienen razón.

Recordemos la degradación continuada del Estado argentino desee 1930 y veremos que la impunidad de los sucesivos gobernantes parece crecer, al igual que la riqueza que ellos se apropian en deterioro de la sociedad trabajadora y pacífica.

Hoy, no tenemos candidatos presidenciales capaces de volver a las fuentes de la Constitución, que cayó en el olvido, porque alli el Congreso legislaba (representando a las provincias y a the people of Argentina), la Corte Suprema hacia cumplir correctamente con el espiritu de la Constitución y las leyes, y el Presidente de turno acataba lo que se le ordenaba, auqnue solía presionar para intentar imponer sus puntos de vista.

TODO ESO MURIÓ

El desprecio de los gobernantes devenidos en millonarios e impunes por la gente a la cual han jurado proteger al asumir el cargo, es proverbial. Rendiciones de cuentas serias, difícilmente se hayan hecho. Los escándalos de la Decada Infame eran migajas comparados con los posteriores. El desastre del militarismo, que nos metió en guerra con los kelpers y U.K.S. en forma inconsulta algún día podrá ser analizado como un esfuerzo para intentar encubrir con una guerra fuera de Argentina continental un conunto de robos y estafas en compras de armamentos que no llegaron y otras barbaridades gangsteriles, que de confirmarse, hubiera merecido juicio marcial a los perjuros militares, que no defendieron la Constitución que juraron respetar.

La desconfianza de la gente en los gobernantes es proverbial, pero estamos casi resignados a votar por el menos malo, en el sentido de que mata o tortura menos, ya que ladrones parecieran todos ser iguales. De vez en cuando aparece algún político interesante, con buenas intenciones, pero el estáblichmento lo baja de un hondazo y pone en su lugar a otro afin a los intereses de un grupito que son los verdaderos dueños del país.

EL VOTO AYUDA SI PERDURA

Es falso que la democracia argentina comenzo en la nueva era en 1983, pues en eo 2002 tuvimos el último golpe de Estado para desplazar al Presidente Fernando de la Rúa,porque la derecha tradicional se negaba a perder el poder. Esa derecha cuenta siempre con el apoyo de los Obispos, que odian las elecciones y prefieren lso fusiles, y cabe recordar que lo primero que hizo Duhalde cuando consiguió ser Presidente sin ser votado, aprovechando un golpe sorprensivo de la asamblea Legialativa, y lo hizo todo tan mal que huyo con el rabo entre las piernas, por fracasado, antes de los dos años que le regalaron para compensarle que perdió cuando dos años antes se presentó para Presidente y lo derrotó Ferando de la Rua.

NO PARECE HABER SALIDA

Si todos los candidatos a Presidente en 2011 apoyan una economia dirigista Estatista, que es la que fracasa en todo el mundo, y en Argentina desde 1930 a hoy, en forma permanente, parece obvio que si hacemos siempre lo mismo, los resultados seran muy parecidos y posiblemente peores, cuando la linea seguida es la equivocada. Para nosotros los que saben producir son los privados, y el Estado no debe competir con ellos. Pero todos los partidos politicos hoy son dirigistas al menos los que tienen representación en el Congreso, asi que ellos son mas de lo MALO, y no el comienzo de lo bueno. Intentaremos una vez mas demostrar cuan malos son nuestros candidatos a gobernantes, a partir de mencionar las cosas importantes que no proponen, a saber:

a) no proponen un sistema que pemrite que la totalidad de los argentinos hoy no ocupados prodictivamehte por la actividad privada, encuentren trabajo productivo, que hace falta en un pais con muchas posibilidades en todos los ordenes.

b) seguimos sin moneda creible (el congreso no cumple su obligacion de inventarla según la constitucion) y sin moneda ni sistema financiero, no hay capitales para que crezca la economia con creditos privados que generen trabajo y produccion privada. Un dislate total de los gobiernos.al Federalismo no se lo respeta, porque los Gobernadores Provinciales prefieren someterse al Presidente del Argentina, en vez de hacerlo complir con la constitucion. Y despues se quejan de que la capital los perjudica, cuando ellos, que controlan el Congreso ya que hay 23 provincias en los 24 circuitos electorales, tienen tres senadores, es decir, la totalidad de lso votos para cambiar las reglas de juego. Pero prefieren asociarse con el Poresidente dirigista bandido antes que defenser a sus provincias y comprovincianos.

a) el Presidente normalmente es un aguerrido politico, sin demasiada vision global, y supone que son los economistas los que manejen la economia y el se decica a la politica y a enriqueserse junto con sus amigos, cuando es bandido. Esto no funciona, porque todos nos enteramos de casi todo, y se desprestigian lso Presidentes, incluso siendo gente de buena volutad, pero la explicacion mas logica es que carecen de nivel cultural elevado o tienen una tremenda angurria y apetencia de dinero y de Poder que les impide traquilidad y serenidad para conducirnos a buen puerto a sus gobernados.

PEDIR AYUDA A LOS QUE SABEN

Es tan triste ver como se desgastan y se van desprestigiando los sucesivos gobernantes, que no pegan una, porque se creen mil, pero luego notan que fracasan y caen en panico de perder el Poder, que uno empieza a sertirles lastima: si no hubieran tenido ambiciones sanas, no hubieran alcanzado esos puestos, pero cuando los ocuparon, se nota que no tuviern tiempo de enriquecerse ellos como gente capaz, y por eso son inseguros y no tienen conocimientos. Pero si ademas no fuesen soberbios, podrian pedir ayuda a Presientes de paises amigos que saben como gobernar, porque las cifras y estadistas no engañan. Y si vemos que hay un grupito de diez o quince paises que hacen las cosas bien es facil preguntarles su receta. En la medida, obvio, que los presidentes no esten intentando enriquecerse como la mayoria sospechamos, especialmete al ver las denuncias que se acumulan contra sus amigos por reiteradas estafas y fraudes al país. Y que aunque no hayan sido condenados por la Justicia, la gente igual no les cree, porque supone que los Jueces están comprados.

Ojo, eso es distinto de nuestra posicion de creer que la Corte Suprema no es seria y es incondiclonal kirchnerista. Nos basamos en que si fueron capaces de decir que la pesificacion era constitucional, que no violaba el derecho de provpiedad, por razones de excepción, son capaces de inventar cualquier otra teoria con tal de mantenerse en sus puestos de incondiconales a los Kirchner,. Al que me diga que un dólar es igual a un peso no convertible, no le creo, y a menos que me muestren un certificado de insania, los creo incondicionales del Presidente de turno que los designó para que dictaran un fallo mentiroso,o sea, que prevaricaran. Y si lo aceptaron convencidos qyue así salvaban a la Patria, peor, son además gente que no leyo la constitución o carecen de honor y seriedad y no merecen estar en el rol de Supremo Tribunal, un puesto reservado para la gente de bien, que si sabe de derecho les ayuda, pero cuya seriedad e imparcialidad deben ser auténticas.

Con esta Korte Kirchnerista no llegamos ni a la esquina los que queremos que la Constitución prime sobre el gobierno, y que las leyes y el sentido comun se apliquen. Y esto dificilmente sucederá, porque cada uno de los miembros del gobierno prefieren un sistema dirigista,que les cree privilegios o leyes especiales a los funcionarios publicos, para vivir mejor a expensas del pueblo llano y trabajador que genera con su trabajo la riqueza suficiente para mantener a nuestros gobernantes bandidos en forma holgada, e incluso jubilarlos con privilegiadas ventajas y emolumentos. Pero estos Kirchner no son peores que sus antecesores, de modo que la culpa es del sistema, y si queremos remontar, en vez de seguir declinando, debemos actuar sobre el sistema, eligiendo un modelo de seriedad, al estilo de los paises que progresan. Y donde no exista Ministerio de Economia, el epicentro de la corrupcion. Otro dia la seguimos, si nos quedan ánimos.

DIRIGISTAS ¿SON TODOS?

29 agosto, 2010

 

Los analistas políticos presentan versiones parecidas casi similares: l

los que favorecen a la oposición, dicen que los partidos que la conforman es mejor que los Kirchner, y éstos estarían derrotados casi, sobre todo a partir del supuesto fracaso del operativo Papel Prensa.

Los analistas oficialistas, dicen lo inverso, los K son los buenos.

Pero esto no sirve para analizar si – como sostenemos – el deterioro argentino se debe al dirigismo estatista, que desde 1930 hasta hoy se intensifica, convertiendo a la Presidencia en un botín millonario, tanto para militares como civiles, peronistas o radicales, porque todos son dirigistas estatistas hoy. Incluso Pino Solanas.

Y lo peor es que no existe partido polÍtico alguno que proponga destruir el sistema dirigista fascista estatista corrupto y ladrón, implantado desde 1930 en forma creciente, donde todo se maneja desde el Ministerio de Economía y ahora desde la Presidencia (Néstor, el Primer Damo, en realidad) , sin intervención de la sociedad. Porque los congresistas son totalmente dirigistas, en todo el arco politico, y nadie propone volver a las fuentes, pero en serio, por medio de lo que sería una “revolución”, que consistiría tan solo en aplicar la Constitución liberal que tenemos, donde es la gente la que produce, y no el Estado.

Por lo tanto, estamos ante una pugna vergonzosa por la Caja, sea Nacional, Provincial o Municipal, y de Federal nada tiene el sistema vigente. De Republicano (división real de poderes) tampoco, porque la Corte Suprema hasta ahora parece seguir la tradición corporativista fascista de acatar al Presidente de turno, que comenzó desde el golpe dirigista fascista de 1930 y perdura.

Cualquiera de los tres eventuales candidatos a Presidente (oficialistas, peronistas federales y la alianza trucha de los partidos dirigistas de la derecha fascista, que son desmembraciones del peronismo y del radicalismo) también serán dirigiendo la economía, enriqueciendo a sus funcionarios, por aquello de que el que parte y reparte se queda con la mejor y mayor parte. Incluso Pino Solanas es dirigista en materia económica, y aunque tenga buenas intenciones, fracasaría si por una remota casualidad fuese elegido como el sorpresivo Presidente.

ESPERAR PARA REFLOTAR

El único justicialista que no nombró Ministro de Economía no cuenta demasiado, porque fue designado tan solo por noventa días como Presidente el Dr. Adolfo Rodríguez Saa. Pero sólo duró una semana y lo echaron cuando entre otras consignas antidirigistas, dijo que no necesitaba Ministro de Economía, que mantendría la convertibilidad , y que quería ahorrar gastos y puso tope a los sueldos estatales. Y por eso lo echaron, en un golpe de Estado tapado por la prensa y por los opositores, al igual que la previa expulsión del “renunciado” Constitucional Presidente Fernando de la Rúa.

Esto nos lleva a la conclusión de que el dirigismo continuará por varios años y por ende, no podremos mejorar, a menos que la teoría económica cambie, que el dirigismo sea superior al sistema de la libertad, que el unitarismo supere al federalismo, y que nuestros políticos tengan un cambio copernicano y abandonen el fascismo bandido que nos devora y se conviertan en respetuosos de la letra y el espiritu de la Constitución que nos rige, que no es dirigista fascista, sino doctrinariamente liberal, que propicia el trabajo privado. 

 Y que el Estado actúe con eficacia, con tres Poderes Independientes, y que el Judicial sea respetado especialmente por el Ejecutivo, lo cual constituiría el cambio copernicano que venimos reclamando y nadie quiere proponer, porque la Corporación Política está cebada y todos quieren manotear la manija o timón de mando, tal como sucede crónicamente.

¿REFORMAR LA CONSTITUCIÓN?

Sería preferible que reformemos la Constitución al estilo argentino real, donde el partido que gana la Presidencia tiene un porcentaje de las ganancias brutas del país, y que no tengan que ocultar los ministros y otros altos funcionarios todo el dinero que embolsan, y que hoy tienen pánico de que se difunda. Menem legalizó el sistema de pagar altos sueldos a sus Ministros, y por eso lo procesaron y castigaron a Maria Julia aunque a los otros ministros creo no los encarcelaron. Pero cobrar extra y mucho lo hacian todos, tal como sucede aparentemente hoy. El caso de la doctora Nofal a cargo de un instituto rarísimo de asesoramiento de inversiones que creo Cristina liquidó en cuando se difundió la noticia,  mostró la  triste realidad de que grandes sueldos siguen pagando incluso los Kirchners, aunque prefieran que eso se tape.

Porque si seguimos con una Constitución que sabemos no se aplica, tenemos el problema de fondo pendiente. En la Facultad de Derecho nos enseñaban que la Ley mas importante del país era la Constitución, porque servía para organizarlo (sistema federal, republicano con tres poderes del Estado independientes). Y si seguimos con la constitución que no aplicamos, y tampoco tenemos el sistema que ella en teoría nos impone, parece obvio que estamos D E S O R G A N I Z A D O S, y que tarde o temprano se producirá el próximo “caos” o borrón y cuenta nueva, que traducido al lenguaje argentino, implica nueva estafa desde el Estado, generalmente por hiperinflación, y a partir de allí legalizar todo, y volver a hace borrón y cuenta nueva. Al estilo de Sísifo, cada diez años circa, digamos. Ojo, ya no están los militares malos para salvar a los justicialistas haciendoles el golpe de Estado o para termianr con igualmente dirigistas fracasados gobiernos radicales.

YA NO LO VEREMOS, PERO…

Este cambio ya no lo verá prácticamente mi generación, pero es posible que se produzca por otros motivos, tipo la conformación de UNASUR y aceptemos varios países – por consenso – tener reglas de juego mejores que las dirigistas fracasadas. De todos modos, es inevitable, la Globalización nos lleva inexorablemente a tener reglas de juego mas sensatas para que todos los que quieran trabajar y necesiten hacerlo, encuentren empleo, sin pagar impuestos los trabajos mas precarios, o sea, suprimiendo aportes jubilatorios y sindicales, para que sea rentable volver a contratar gente que trabaje productivamente en el sector privado, sin que los sindicalistas molesten en esa franja tan necesitada.Trabajar en libertad es cronológicamente el primer Derecho Humano.

Algo parecido a lo que sucede en la Comunidad Europea, donde Alemania es el socio mas confiable (fue entrenada por USA y U.K. para abandonar el sistema dirigista perdidoso de Hitler, y luego el igualmente malo en el sector de Alemania Oriental) que va obligando a otras naciones a comportarse mas seriamente en materia económica. Hasta los socialistas españoles hoy deben hacer buena letra y ajustarse el cinturón.

Por un lado, me apena que la causa de la declinación nacional (el dirigismo que fracasa siempre en los países occidentales) no cambie durante los años de vida que me queden, que no son tantos. Y por otro, estoy tranquilo en el sentido de que es tal el fracaso del sistema dirigista corrupto en Argentina, que en algún momento deberemos cambiarlo. Porque es preciso que mas gente se ponga a trabajar,y es mentira de que el único trabajo que sirve es el que está “legalizado”, ya que el trabajo informal permite defenderse a los sectores mas pobres.

Días atrás leía que la mitad de los trabajadores de Brasil son informales, y aunque pueda no ser exacto,  no me sorprende. Y por el bien de los hermanos brasileños, es mejor que no insistan en “blanquear” a sus trabajadores en negro, porque aumentará la desocupación, y así la inseguridad, la pobreza, …etc., tal como sucede en Argentina, un país  mas rico que Brasil en términos de proporción entre población y recursos naturales a explotar.

PRETTY WOMEN

29 agosto, 2010

Pretty women : Hallal et non hallal. DON’T WORRY, BE HAPPY!

domingo, 29 de agosto de 2010, 1:57
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“SUE LITTLETON” <mujermaiz@yahoo.com>
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NO SE PREOCUPEN, AMIGOS, SEAN FELICES!  La mujer vista por el Occidente y el Oriente. 

Sue

 
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VOTAR ¿DAÑA?

28 agosto, 2010

 

Los que vivimos la Argentina donde los militares para protegernos nos impedian votar, sabemos que lo hacían para dominarnos ellos como casta superior. Convencidos – por sus instructores militares nazis y fascistas – que había que defender la Patria y la Fe, contra los bandidos herejes que desde el exterior querían destrozar nuestra cultura. Con los años descubrimos, por experiencia propia, que ellos fueron engañados, nos hicieron retroceder al destrozarnos la Constitución, y hoy todavía no la hemos podido recuperar, porque el sistema fascista – impuesto por las armas en septiembre de 1930 – fue un desastre total. Tan bestias fueron sus miembros, que apostaron justo al caballo perdedor, el Eje Roma Berlín, y nos hundieron, pero en su momento vivieron y disfrutaron como cerdos de las ventajas del Poder. Al igual supongo hicieron en Cuba, sin ser militares, los hermanos Castro,que hoy siguen dueños totales de la paridisíaca ex joya del Caribe.

ACTUALES ENEMIGOS DEL VOTO

Hoy, quedan pocos enemigos (teóricamente) del voto popular, y están repartidos en minúsculos bolsones. Como militares ya casi de hecho no quedan, porque es impensable pelear con nuestros países vecinos, que estamos cada uno a cuál mas pobre,y tenemos prioridades tales como la salud, la reconstrucción de los daños de nuestros propios ex gobernantes, la ausencia de pleno empleo y la insensatez de nuestra débil (en cuanto a capacidad) clase politica gobernante, a juzgar por los resultados que vamos teniendo en los últimos ochenta años.

 Porque si legislaran sensatamente, creceríamos a ritmo mayor que el chino. Basta notar el porcentaje enorme de argentinos que poco o nada producen, y de hambre no se mueren, para observar que es fácil poner a semejante energia humana (cinco millones, circa) ociosa en acción. Serían como un ejército de hormigas buenas y laboriosas, si se les permitiese trabajar en libertad, pero parece  que nuestros legisladores no se interesan. Son mayoritariamente privilegiados y quieren mantenerse como Corporación Politca´angurrienta, para favorecerse ellos en detrimento del noventa y nueve y pico por ciento de los argentinos.

Pero, ojo, los políticos profesionales aman el voto, porque casi siempre pellizcan algún carguito. Esos no son los enemigos del votar, sino los eternos favorecidos del sistema que tenemos, con listas sabanas y colectoras, que les permite perpetuarse en el poder y jubilarse como privilegiados con retiros muchas veces superiores a los jubilados comunes.

Los enemigos verdaderos son otros. Muy pocos, en apariencia, pero muy poderosos por los medios de los que disponen. Si fuese posible establecer un rankingo, hoy sospecho que son los KIRCHNER los que mas le temen al voto, porque parecería están llegando al convencimiento de que la sociedad se les da vuelta, que ya no le cree a la señora Presidenta, y que algo debe ser hecho para intentar repetir la hazaña de ser Presidentes dentro de un año y pico, para el periodo 2011/15.

La forma de ganar las elecciones, cuando se pierde el prestigio. puede ser – o no – el cambiar la información, para engañar al electorado. Cosa que crea que vamos ganando (como nos decía Galtieri durante Malvinas) y en realidad perdemos como en la guerra (de Malvinas). Mientras tanto, hay bandidos que roban las veinticuatro horas del dia, y eso es motivo archisuficiente para una carga desesperada para intentar ganar las próximas presidenciales.

EN TREN DE SER JUSTOS

El sistema Constitucional argentino tiene un serio problema: está diseñado para gente libre con ciudadanos libres. Cosa que todavía no somos, pese a siglo y medio pasado de Constitución copiada de la Norteamericana, pero con errores y horrores.

Los yanquis son prácticos, por eso llegaron a la Luna en 1969 antes que nadie. Ellos no conciben que el Chief Justice (Presidente de la Corte) pueda ser presionado por el Ejecutivo o por el Congreso. Para eso inventaron el teléfono, cosa que el Chief Justice llame y pida auxilio, y en seguida aparecen SWAT y los medios de prensa, y renace la calma, poorque nadie, ni siquiera President Obama, podría imaginar amenazar, presionar y mucho menos, coimear a la Corte Suprema de la Unión, que dicta muy pocos fallos al año, todos muy importantes, y casi siempre buscan mantener jurisprudencias sensatas de fallos a veces centenarios.

En Argentina las Cortes Cupremas todas han sido presionadas, manipuladas o expulsadas por los Presidentes de turno, militares o electoralmente elegidos. Es lo normal en nuestro país, y esto es un tema cultural. Se nota que la propia Corte Suprema está integrada por gente que no se siente igual, sino inferior (en el rankingo gubernamental) al Presidente. Y que también, de hecho, y aunque saben que el Congreso es superior al Ejecutivo, intentan – por temor reverencial y porque la Policía y otros elementos de poder dependen del segundo – hacer la vista gorda y decir que se tienen que arreglar entre Ejecutivo y Congreso, y a la Corte lo único que deben hacerle es enviarle mas fondos para que ellos los manejen mejor y usen para que haya menos injusticia, menos inseguridad, bla, bla. bla. El Chief Justice Dr. Lonrenzetti medio que lo insinúa, pero no dice claro que hay bandidos en el Ejecutivo, y que posiblemente no es el único supremo del tribunal que lo sabe.

El día que la mayoría de la Corte Suprema razone como la de USA, se acaba la prepotencia del Ejecutivo, porque a la Presidenta la frenan en seco, con un par de fallos, que ella sí o sí deberá respetar. Porque siendo nuestro sistema constitucional mera copia (mala, dijimos, pero copia al fin) de la yanqui, el Tío Sam es demasiado práctico y simple: a la Corte se la obedece, y el Presidente que desconoce a los Jueces es un bandido, y como tal le pueden hacer cualquier cosa, desde ignorarlo, bloquearle el pais, cortarle la ayuda, no dejarlo entrar a los lugares donde nuestros Presidentes prefieren, y finalmente lograr via los medios publicitarios que el pueblo argentino se entere que los Presidentes son los malos y los jueces son los buenos.

 Pero obviamente, es preciso que esto sea verdad, que los Jueces Supremos fallen de acuerdo con la única Constitucion seria que existe y se cumple (la Norteamericana) y con eso tan solo, el “sistema” obliga a que Ejecutivo o incluso un Congreso remiso incondicional, ladrón u oficialista, permitan pasivamente que la Constitución sea violada, como pareciera quieren hacer hoy los desesperados oficialistas que temen que el Poder se les escape en el 2011.

Como permanentes oficialistas, siempre pedimos a Cristina que haga respetar la Constitución y las leyes, y que comience ella dando el ejemplo, pero no parece escucharnos e insiste en lo opuesto. Lo cierto es que nos estamos hartando, y creemos es casi irrecuperable Cristina, en el sentido de que para “recuperar” nuestra confianza en ella, primero los K  debierían mostrarnos que cumplen con la Constitución y las Leyes conforme con la versión norteamericana. Donde el Congreso Manda, el Ejecutivo obedece y ejecuta y el Judicial decide.

Hoy por hoy, pareciera que los K despliegan una táctica “piola” criolla: llenar de propaganda a la mayoría que ellos suponen es la mas inculta del país (los mas pobres y relegados), que sería la que detenta la mayoríaa de los votos, y para eso les regala fútbol y otras ventajas mentirosas, pero ventajas al fin.

Con eso, si la minoria votara creyendo que los K son Estadistas y los opositores una basura (esto mismo opinamos nosotros de la mayoria de nuestros Congresales, excepciones muy pocas) bastaría el cuarenta por ciento de votos a favor de los K y una diferencia del 10% sobre el segundo mas votado, para que los K se prolonguen otros cuatro años, sin necesidad de ballotage o segunda vuelta electoral.

TEST PARA LOS ARGENTINOS

Ese futuro resultado electoral permitirá, al cierre de las elecciones presidenciales,  determinar si al pueblo argentino se lo puede seguir engañando como chicos, o si ya evolucionamos y sabemos cuando nos están dando información tramposa para robarnos mejor.

Nos inclinamos a pensar que ya no pueden engañar a mas de un treinta por ciento, o quizás menos, los gobernantes  tramposos. Porque los tiempos cambiaron, existen otros medios de intercomunicación, y ya no es  tan facil comprar votos a los interesados, o dar documentos argentinos a los nacidos en los países vecinos para que voten por el oficialismo. Es decir, que ya es tarde para que los Kirchner intenten ganar por el lado del engaño, y que sólo les queda cambiar su actual politica y convertirla en algo mas coherente y serio. Donde los amigos del Gobierno dejen de robar (tan solo falta un año y dos meses, no es tanto) para que se note el cambio operado a favor de la sociedad, ya que “the people of Argentina” percibe muy rápido cuando se operan cambios en la politica.

Oviamente, los K tambien lo saben, por eso apuestan a engañar a los mas pobres, según algunos comentaristas periodísticos.

Por el contrario, proponemos que apunten a cumplir con la Constitución y las leyes en el año y dos meses que les resta, esa será la mejor propaganda K para reclutar votos y ser reelegidos. Y de paso, sacarse de encima a los mas bandidos famosos de los actuales funcionarios K,  para mostrar que un cambio existe, e intentar reemplazarlos por gente mas seria, sin prontuarios, y si es posible, de partidos opositores. Total, esa gente nueva no podrá influir demasiado, pero el electorado sí podrá sentirse con mas ganas de votar por Néstor o Cristina, aunque luego de ganar, despidan en el acto  a los funcionarios que nombraron solo para ganar las elecciones. En una de esas, el sistema les convence de gobernar bien, y mantienen a los funcionarios nuevos.

MORALEJA

Aplicando la Constitución, el país funciona sobre rieles y exitosamente, porque la actividad privada lo impulsa, al contrario de hoy, cando el dirigismo fascista lo impide, porque nos traban demasiado todo y encima se roban mucho mas que lo “razonable”  desde el Gobierno. Y eso depende de como votemos los argentinos.

El sistema de votar es un invento de vanguardia, los países que lo tienen en serio progresan, los que no lo tienen están atrasados y arruinados, sean paises o corporaciones. Basta ver a Cuba, que da lástima, o al Vaticano, que se cae a pedazos, donde la palabra elección implica un oscuro y secreto conclave que termina imponiendo al candidao mas flojo y pierden clientela los partisanos del Obispo de Roma frente al avance incontenible de cristinanismos tan tradicionales como el de ellos, o incluso con neocristianismos simpáticos, que suman adeptos en vez de expulsarlos.

Por lo tanto, queremos creer que no puede mas el pueblo ser engañado, y que si los K ganan la presidencia en el 2011, será porque son una maravilla (porque hicieron caso a esta charla, jamás diremos) , y estamos hoy equivocados si creemos que gobiernan mal. O quizas no, solo que los K siguen siendo mejores que el resto de la oposición, cosa sumamente posible.

Frente al resultado de las elecciones libres, hay que admitirlo, igual que hicimos con el fallo de Bonia, al cual si o si debimos acatar. Sea cual sea, no ponernos en la posición de los “patriotas” que se quejan siempre de todos, y aconsejan no votar, porque se saben la derecha y añoran el militarismo católico instaurado por Uriburu en 1930 que dividia a los argentinos en dos castas, una minoria ilustrada catolica, y una masa laboriosa, que obedecía,  pero hoy ya no existe. Las legislaciones justicialistas la confudieron, la masa hoy tiene desocupación y ese es su problema principal y una de las  causas de la inseguridad.

La  movilidad social terminó con los arcaicos nazis “patriotas” que hoy se siguen lamentando su corto bandido período de la Década Infame, que tanto atraso nos provocó al dejarnos sin Constitución hasta hoy. Los “patriotas” se extinguen como los dinosaurios, porque la globalización convierte al Mundo en la patria de todos…Y a nosotros, Argentina, en mero municipio de la Aldea Global.

ARGENTINE UPDATE

27 agosto, 2010

Sue

By Kristina Cooke and Alexandra Ulmer

26 August 2010

 

* Forensic technology aids search for dictatorship victims

* Identification allows prosecutors to open rights cases

 

BUENOS AIRES, Aug 26 (Reuters Life!) – Small red coffins are stacked inside a bleak office just blocks from Argentina’s Congress, a chilling reminder of the thousands of people kidnapped and killed during the bloody 1976-1983 dictatorship.

 

Inside the boxes are the bones of recently identified victims of the so-called Dirty War, waiting to be picked up by relatives for a proper burial three decades after they were murdered by their own government.

 

Identifications have sped up in the last 2-½ years, thanks to improved DNA technology and a public campaign urging relatives of the disappeared to donate blood samples.

 

Forensic anthropologists have identified 120 Dirty War victims since 2007, about a third of the total identifications made in the last 27 years, enabling families to finally find closure and bring human rights abusers to justice.

 

French activist Yves Domergue, whose remains were identified this year, was 22 when he disappeared in 1976. His family had been looking for answers since.

 

“Now we can properly mourn and also begin new trials against those responsible,” his brother Eric Domergue said.

 

Human rights groups estimate as many as 30,000 people were abducted and killed during the military dictatorship. Many were anonymously buried in local cemeteries while others were pushed from military aircraft into the sea.

 

“The perpetrators thought that even if we discovered the bones of the people they threw into the sea or buried in the ground, we’d never know who they were,” Domergue said. “It’s thanks to science that we got Yves back.”

 

Anthropologists found Yves Domergue’s body in an unmarked grave in Santa Fe province last year and matched DNA from his bones with blood samples his parents and brother provided.

 

Spurred by a campaign that started in 2007 and was relaunched last week, about 3,000 families have so far donated blood to a DNA database managed by the Argentine Forensic Anthropology Team, a nongovernmental group.

 

“The database means the families will have the possibility of getting answers practically forever,” said Luis Fondebrider, one of the team’s founding members.

 

This week his team is sending 600 bone fragments and 900 blood samples to a private U.S. lab that helped identify victims of the 9/11 attacks on the World Trade Center, hoping their sophisticated software system will find matches.

 

DETECTIVE WORK

 

DNA technology has improved significantly over the last few years, making the identification process faster and more accurate, said Ed Huffine, an executive at the Bode Technology Group, the U.S. lab that analyzes the Argentine DNA.

 

Ever-smaller DNA samples can be detected and extracted from degraded remains, meaning bones that could not tell a story before, now can.

 

But the process of identifying victims and building a case against those responsible is an arduous one that begins long before samples are sent for costly DNA analysis.

 

The bones can reveal the age, sex and diseases a person suffered, but about half the Argentine Forensic Anthropology Team’s work is following the paper trail.

 

This involves trawling through cemetery, police and military records and conducting interviews with survivors, former military officials and family members.

 

“It’s part historian, part science, part detective work,” Fondebrider said.

 

Without an identified body, the suspected killers cannot be put on trial for murder.

 

Earlier this month, Fondebrider testified in the trial of two former top army officials charged with five murders based on identifications he made.

 

The five identified were among eight bodies found in cement-filled drums in October 1976.

 

For families, it is finally knowing what happened that provides the most relief. When remains are identified, relatives are invited to the anthropologists’ offices in Buenos Aires for a viewing.

 

“Many ask, ‘How do you know this is my loved one?'” Fondebrider said. “Because they are not looking at flesh and blood … they need to know for sure.”

 

 

By Ben Bain and Tal Barak Harif

August 27, 2010

 

Argentine bonds are headed to their biggest two-week slump in three months as a slowing global economy and growing clash between the government and the country’s largest newspaper erode demand for the securities.

 

The average yield that investors demand to hold Argentine dollar bonds instead of U.S. Treasuries has climbed 82 basis points, or 0.82 percentage point, this week to 776, according to JPMorgan Chase & Co. The gap has widened 106 basis points since Aug. 13, the biggest two-week surge since May, while the average spread on emerging-market debt over Treasuries rose 20.

 

The South American country’s bonds are underperforming after President Cristina Fernandez de Kirchner asked a court this week to review the 1976 purchase of a newsprint producer by Grupo Clarin SA, a move opposition leaders say is an attempt to silence critics in the media. The bond decline, which snapped a six-week rally, the longest in four months, has also been sparked by concern that a faltering global expansion will erode demand for the country’s wheat, corn and soybean exports.

 

“The selloff is partly related to fears of a double dip, fears of slower economic growth globally,” Jim Craige, who helps manage $12 billion of emerging-market debt at Stone Harbor Investment Partners, said in a telephone interview in New York. The Argentine government’s actions “definitely have contributed” to the decline, he said.

 

Debt Restructuring

 

The surge in yields may lead Fernandez to push back plans to sell the country’s first bonds in international markets since a 2001 default on $95 billion of debt, according to Craige.

 

Economy Minister Amado Boudou said yesterday in Buenos Aires that the government has no fiscal need to sell the debt and would only do so to “set a lower benchmark rate” for the country. Boudou, who in June oversaw the restructuring of $12.9 billion of debt left over from the 2001 default, said as recently as Aug. 4 that the government was looking to sell bonds overseas at yields under 10 percent.

 

The average yield on Argentine dollar bonds has climbed to 10.67 percent from 9.94 percent on Aug 13, according to JPMorgan.

 

“They’ll try to wait for a better moment when market spreads aren’t so high,” said Alejandro Urbina, a Chicago-based emerging-market debt portfolio manager at Silva Capital Management LLC.

 

Economic Concern

 

The extra yield investors demand to hold Argentine dollar bonds instead of U.S. Treasuries widened to 776 basis points, according to JPMorgan’s EMBI+ index, from 670 on Aug. 13. JPMorgan advised investors to sell holdings of the dollar Argentinean bonds, citing concern that “domestic political conflicts are escalating” and global growth is slowing, after benchmark yields fell to their lowest levels since November 2007 this month.

 

Concern the global recovery is faltering has increased after data from the U.S. Labor Department showed companies created 51,000 jobs on average from May through July, down from 200,000 in the prior two months, and as the Federal Reserve Bank of Kansas City said manufacturing slowed in August in the region.

 

A court ruled yesterday that Spain’s method of auditing sales tax was illegal, raising concern about the country’s fiscal stability.

 

Argentine bonds have lost 7.4 percent since Aug. 13, paring their gain this year to 11.1 percent, according to JPMorgan’s EMBI+ index.

 

The yield on the 2015 bonds climbed 40 basis points to 11.31 percent yesterday, according to data compiled by Bloomberg.

 

Default Risk

 

The cost of protecting Argentine debt against non-payment for five years with credit-default swaps jumped 27 basis points to 918 yesterday, the highest since July 16, according to data compiled by CMA DataVision. Credit-default swaps pay the buyer face value in exchange for the underlying securities or the cash equivalent should a government or company fail to adhere to debt agreements.

 

Warrants linked to growth in South America’s second-biggest economy fell 0.03 cent yesterday to 9.48 cents, according to data compiled by Bloomberg.

 

Argentina’s peso slid less than 0.1 percent to 3.9445 per dollar.

 

Fernandez, 57, said Aug. 24 the sale of paper maker Papel Prensa SA to Clarin, La Razon and La Nacion was illegal because the owner, Grupo Graiver, was under pressure by the country’s military dictatorship to agree to the transaction. Buenos Aires- based Clarin now holds a 49 percent stake in Papel Prensa after buying La Razon’s share.

 

Favorable Coverage

 

Clarin and La Nacion, in a joint statement, said that in court testimony made after the country returned to democracy in 1983, the Graiver family said it had sold Papel Prensa and other assets to settle large amounts of debt.

 

Isidoro Graiver, a member of the family that sold Papel Prensa, said in a statement published in both newspapers on Aug. 25 that the transaction was voluntary.

 

Opposition lawmakers, including former Buenos Aires Governor Felipe Sola and Elisa Carrio, said Fernandez’s administration is trying to pressure the media for coverage favorable to the government.

 

“The government seems very willing to lock horns here with the Clarin group, and it brings back very poor memories of what you could look at as freedom of expression,” Enrique Alvarez, head of Latin America fixed-income research at IDEAglobal, said by telephone from New York. “It’s not an angle that investors view positively.”

 

by Jude Webber in Buenos Aires

August 27, 2010

 

Argentina’s central bank on Thursday relaxed key monetary targets after overshooting annual goals for growth in monetary aggregates, heralding a stance that favours stoking growth over reining in inflation.

 

It is the first time the central bank has failed to meet the monetary programme since Argentina introduced the method in 2003, and points to a central bank increasingly at the service of a spendthrift government, which ejected the former central bank president earlier this year for refusing to hand over reserves to pay debt.

 

State spending is growing at more than 30 per cent a year and national, provincial and municipal expenditure adds up to 45 per cent of gross domestic product, says Fausto Spotorno, an analyst at consultancy OJF.

 

The bank’s board approved an increase in the upper limit for expansion of total M2 – a measure of total money supply – to 29.4 per cent. Under the old programme, growth of M2 this year should have been kept below 18.9 per cent.

 

“This shows the government is taking the central bank hostage for its political needs,” said Martín Redrado, the ousted former central bank governor. “The government is printing money at will without taking into consideration demand for money … The signal is ‘let it go’,” he said.

 

The central bank said the previous estimates were based on projected gross domestic product growth of 2.5 per cent for 2010. “The estimated real growth of the economy – based on published first-quarter results and advance indicators of second-quarter activity – put this in a range between 8.9 and 9.5 per cent,” it said.

 

“As a result, the board of the central bank decided to update the goals and forecasts for monetary demand so that they are compatible with the higher growth seen in economic activity.”

 

As of August 13, base money was growing at 28.2 per cent year on year, while M2 was growing at 22.8 per cent and M3 at 30 per cent, noted Alberto Ramos, an economist at Goldman Sachs.

 

Such monetary expansion is dangerous in an economy where inflation of 25 to 30 per cent is expected in 2010.

 

Officially, the inflation rate was 11.2 per cent in July and is running at 6.7 per cent so far this year, but the data have lost all credibility in the past three years after widespread allegations – confirmed by former officials – that the government is underreporting the numbers.

 

“There is no indication monetary demand is higher. If there were more demand for pesos, interest rates would go higher and they aren’t,” Mr Redrado said.

 

The central bank also has to print 15bn pesos (£2.4bn, $3.8bn, €3bn) from the bank’s profits, to transfer them to the Treasury. That will represent an estimated increase of some 10 per cent in the 140bn peso monetary base.

 

The bank says the move will not fuel inflation, but accompanies the need for more money in circulation because of higher spending and more demand for loans. With the economy blazing ahead, trying to corral monetary aggregates into the 2010 goals “could risk cooling the economy,” one source said.

 

The government of Cristina Fernández has thus made clear that it favours keeping growth, based on surging demand, blazing ahead in the run-up to elections next October, and that it is prepared to pay for that with high inflation. 

   
 

By Taos Turner

August 26, 2010

 

BUENOS AIRES –Argentina’s central bank on Thursday loosened its monetary goals for 2010, saying that an increased supply of money is needed to accompany unexpectedly rapid economic growth.

 

“A larger economy means, by definition, a larger number and volume of transactions in the economy,” the Argentine Central Bank said in a statement. “This at once implies the need for a greater amount of money to be able to carry out those transactions.”

 

The bank increased its maximum target for growth in the money supply to 29.4% by the end of the year, from 18.9% previously.

 

It also changed its maximum target for the total money supply, or M2, to 254.7 billion pesos ($64.6 billion) by the year’s end.

 

The central bank in the same statement said it was raising its forecast for Argentina’s economic growth this year to between 8.9% and 9.5%, much higher than its previous estimate of 2.5%.

 

The bank forecast third-quarter growth at 9.2% and fourth-quarter growth at 9%, following an estimated expansion of 11.1% in the second quarter and 6.8% in the first.

 

“The Argentine economy has consolidated its expansionary path and returned to similar rates of growth it experienced before the international crisis, driven mainly by private consumption and exports,” the central bank said.

 

Many central bank critics say Argentina should tighten its money supply so the economy can grow at a slower but more sustainable rate. This, they argue, would help the government contain inflation that private sector economists say surpasses 20% and seems set to rise later this year and next.

 

But Central Bank President Mercedes Marco del Pont, known for her unorthodox approach to monetary policy, has discarded such recommendations.

 

“We worked realistically to guarantee a monetary policy that’s not restrictive and that doesn’t inhibit economic growth,” Marco del Pont said in the statement. “Policies that cool off the economy are those that historically have led to failure.”

 

In a report earlier Thursday, Goldman Sachs economist Alberto Ramos said the central bank’s easing “attests to the authorities weak commitment towards price stability.”

 

Inflation, Ramos said, is running as high as 22%, fueled by loose monetary rules, constant salary hikes in the neighborhood of 25% to 30% and public spending that’s rising at the rate of 30% annually.

 

By allowing the money supply to grow by around 30%, Ramos said the central bank is tacitly acknowledging that inflation is hovering around 20%.

 

 

August 27, 2010

 

Argentina’s central bank on Thursday relaxed key monetary targets after overshooting annual goals for growth in monetary aggregates, heralding a stance that favours stoking growth over reining in inflation.

 

It is the first time the central bank has failed to meet the monetary programme since Argentina introduced the method in 2003, and points to a central bank increasingly at the service of a spendthrift government, which ejected the former central bank president earlier this year for refusing to hand over reserves to pay debt.

 

State spending is growing at more than 30 per cent a year and national, provincial and municipal expenditure adds up to 45 per cent of gross domestic product, says Fausto Spotorno, an analyst at consultancy OJF.

 

 

By Charles Newbery

26 August 2010

 

–Will Continue Kirchner Economic Policies

–Opposes 82% Pension Proposal, Policies Must be Sustainable

 

BUENOS AIRES (MNI) – Argentine Economy Minister Amado Boudou Thursday called on executives to invest in the country, saying this will help sustain the economy as it grows for a seventh successive year.

 

“The big challenge at the next stage for the country is to generate investment,” he said at a Council of the Americas conference in Buenos Aires.

 

He said the government plans to roll out a credit line with a 9% interest rate for capital investment.

 

“We expect you to use these credits and accompany the country” as it expands, Boudou told executives at the conference.

 

Argentina’s economy is expanding faster than expected this year, buoyed by rising international demand for commodities and strong growth in Brazil, its biggest trading partner. Argentina is a big producer and exporter of corn, soybeans, wheat and derivatives like soy oil. It also produces autos and steel for export, in particular to Brazil.

 

Argentine Cabinet Chief Anibal Fernandez, who also spoke at the conference, said the economy will grow by 6.3% this year, double what was expected at the start of the year. He said growth will continue in 2011 and unemployment will decline.

 

“Argentina is an excellent environment for business,” Fernandez said.

 

Yet direct investment has lagged in the country since its 2001-02 economic crisis, as financial problems — the government is still trying to settle more than $10 billion in national debt from a 2001 default on more than $90 billion — have made it harder for companies to borrow locally or abroad.

 

Executives also are wary of a rise in state regulation, price controls and heavy taxes. The government has jacked up export taxes on crops and implemented for the first time export taxes on oil and petroleum products, and is increasing its interests in the media and utilities.

 

Inflation is running at an annual 25%, according to most private estimates.

 

These conditions have led to a steady flight of capital now at more than $40 billion since 2006-07.

 

Even so, the government said the economy is poised for stronger growth.

 

Boudou said he will maintain the economic policies that began in 2003 with Nestor Kirchner and continues with his wife, President Cristina Fernandez de Kirchner.

 

The key elements of this policy are fiscal and trade surpluses and the accumulation of international reserves, now at $50.2 billion. Another is a competitive exchange rate: the peso now trading at about 3.94 per dollar. It is administered by the central bank to help foster exports and limit imports.

 

These conditions have been maintained for the past seven years, he said, adding that this along with creativity and flexibility have helped the country to face up to international crises like this year’s debt problems in Europe.

 

“These are the solid pillars for the growth of the country,” he said.

 

He said the government will not accept a plan by the opposition to increase pension payments, saying it would not be sustainable. Opposition parties are pushing a bill through Congress designed to fix the minimum pension at 82% of the minimum wage.

 

Boudou said the government will maintain export taxes because these have helped sustain the fiscal surplus without slowing production.

 

The country will produce a record crop this year, he said.

 

“We have developed industry and exports so to bring in foreign currencies to the country” and “we have developed the domestic market and consumption,” Boudou said. “This has helped sustain the economy during an international crisis”

 

He said the government will continue to negotiate the settlement of its remaining defaulted debt, such as the $6.7 billion owed to the Paris Club of creditor nations.

 

“We want to resolve our remaining debt problems,” he said. When the debt is settled, Argentina “will have lower interest rates” and this will help build investment in the country.

 

By Shane Romig and Taos Turner

26 August 2010

 

BUENOS AIRES (Dow Jones)–While neighboring Brazil achieved a coveted investment-grade rating last year, institutional weakness and poor crisis-management capacity continue to prevent Argentina from improving its credit rating, according to Gabriel Torres, senior sovereign debt analyst at Moody’s Investors Service.

 

The outlook for Argentina’s very low B3 sovereign rating is stable, Torres said Thursday at a Council of the Americas event.

 

Though economic growth is strong and Argentina has a fiscal surplus, Torres said there are doubts about how the surplus will evolve in the future. He also said Argentina has a hard time dealing with political disputes, which often become institutional crises.

 

Most other countries in the region have found political stability, he said. But Argentina has struggled to prevent its recurring crises from affecting investor confidence and investment.

 

Argentina, Brazil and Mexico all shared roughly the same sovereign credit rating 15 years ago, Torres said. But Mexico and Brazil have become more predictable nations by reaching a kind of political consensus that has been elusive in Argentina.

 

Speaking shortly after Torres, Argentine Supreme Court President Ricardo Lorenzetti said instability here stems from the many crises that have peppered Argentina’s history over the past 50 years.

 

“The credibility of our institutions is in doubt,” Lorenzetti said.

 

Lorenzetti said Argentina needs “clear rules of the game” and indicated that politicians need to strengthen institutions instead of using them as a means to some particular political end.

 

Lorenzetti’s comment comes as the government is engaged in a heated battle with the country’s media companies, including Grupo Clarin S.A. (GCLA.BA). The government has accused Clarin and other media companies of biased reporting and dishonesty while Grupo Clarin has accused the government of manipulating the law to silence voices that are critical of government policy.

 

One of Argentina’s most questioned government institutions is the national statistics institute, Indec, which has been accused of manipulating inflation and other data.

 

Torres said the controversy of Indec’s data hurts the government’s case that Argentina is a reliable investment.

 

“There are serious problems if you can’t trust the country’s data,” Torres said, noting that companies and labor unions in Argentina routinely discard Indec’s data when negotiating salary hikes.

 

Many economists say the government’s failure, in their view, to produce accurate inflation data has led to a de-facto default on Argentine bonds that are indexed to inflation.

 

Torres said Moody’s has not formally characterized this as a default for technical reasons.

 

Indec officials say the institute’s data are better than ever and other government officials have dismissed claims that Indec’s data are an impediment to a stronger credit rating.

 

Economy Minister Amado Boudou, who also spoke at the event, said Argentina’s economy is solid. He reiterated that Argentina has “no need” to issue debt but said that when it does it “will be to do so at a lower interest rate and not because of any fiscal need.”

 

 

 

By Hilary Burke and Kristina Cooke

26 August 2010

 

* Argentina eases monetary policy despite rising inflation

* Central bank sees 2010 growth of 8.9-9.5 pct

 

BUENOS AIRES, Aug 26 (Reuters) – Argentina’s central bank loosened its 2010 money supply targets on Thursday, easing monetary policy despite rising inflation.

 

The South American country is stoking red-hot economic growth through expansive monetary and fiscal policies ahead of an October 2011 presidential election.

 

Most private economists forecast growth of more than 8 percent this year, pushing inflation to between 25 percent and 30 percent.

 

Analysts said the increase in the supply of pesos will further fuel price pressures in Latin America’s No. 3 economy.

 

“With inflation going up, we would have liked a move in the opposite direction, with the central bank tightening monetary policy,” said Carola Sandy, an emerging markets analyst at Credit Suisse.

 

The central bank said it was lifting its upper limit for third-quarter money supply growth to 28.8 percent from 19 percent. The upper limit will be 29.4 percent in the fourth quarter, according to a statement released by the central bank.

 

“This was a realistic exercise in order to guarantee a monetary policy that would not be restrictive or inhibit economic growth,” central bank chief Mercedes Marco del Pont said in the statement.

 

The central bank sees 2010 economic growth of 8.9 percent to 9.5 percent for 2010, according to the statement.

 

The central bank intervenes almost daily in the foreign exchange market to avoid sharp movements in the peso’s value.

 

In recent months, it has been mainly buying dollars to keep the peso from firming, which injects more money into the system.

 

“With more pesos being issued, consumption increases and with that so do inflationary pressures,” said Rodolfo Rossi, a former Argentine central bank president.

 

The central bank absorbs some of the extra liquidity through weekly sales of notes and bills. But analysts said they are absorbing much less than they are issuing, which had made the central bank’s monetary targets increasingly difficult to meet.

 

“The relaxation of the monetary program amid growing inflation inertia attests to the authorities’ weak commitment toward price stability,” Alberto Ramos, senior economist at Goldman Sachs, wrote in a research note earlier on Thursday.

 

Strong economic growth boosts the chances that President Cristina Fernandez’s husband and predecessor, Nestor Kirchner, would be elected in 2011, as the presidential couple is expected to try to take turns in power.

 

Central bank chief Mercedes Marco del Pont is finishing out the term of the previous bank president, which ends Sept. 23, and she could either be replaced or reconfirmed in the post.

 

 

26 August 2010

 

News from America.com and the Washington File

 

SPEECH BY JUDITH A. MCHALE, UNDER SECRETARY OF STATE, FOR PUBLIC DIPLOMACY AND PUBLIC AFFAIRS, AT THE CONFERENCE, “ARGENTINA: ECONOMIC AND POLITICAL PERSPECTIVES”

 

Thursday, August 26, 2010, Alvear Palace Hotel, Buenos Aires, Argentina

 

Susan Segal; Carlos de la Vega; Minister Timerman; Ambassador Negroponte; Members of the Diplomatic Corps, Legislators and Officials of the Government of Argentina; and distinguished guests:

 

I am delighted to be here with you today. I want to especially thank my good friend Susan Segal and Carlos de la Vega for giving me the chance to join you and for enabling me to return to Buenos Aires, which is one of my favorite cities.

 

I have had the great pleasure of having visited Argentina on many previous occasions, both for business and for pleasure. As President and Chief Executive Officer of Discovery Communications, I oversaw our operations here and worked closely with my media counterparts in Argentina. We launched Discovery Channel Argentina in 1996 and it very quickly became one of the anchors of our Latin American strategy. Together with our Argentine colleagues in distribution and advertising, we helped expand entertainment and information options to consumers across Argentina. Discovery Argentina fast became a profitable part of our business and, as CEO, I was particularly proud of all that we achieved. Even during the economic crisis of 2001, when many international businesses were curtailing their operations in Argentina, we worked closely with our business partners to redefine our strategies to enable us to stay here and to grow.

 

During those years, I also came to appreciate and value the artistic creativity and entrepreneurial spirit of the people of Argentina. Today, in my current role as Under Secretary of State for Public Diplomacy and Public Affairs, I am focused on finding new and innovative ways for the people of our two countries to work more closely together to seek solutions to the challenges which confront us, from climate change to global health, and to seize the limitless opportunities which lie ahead.

 

Our bilateral partnership starts, naturally, with the positive relationship that exists between our leaders and governments — but it goes far beyond that to encompass organizations and individual citizens from every walk of life. The friendship between Argentina and the United States is sustained by daily interactions between business leaders, academics and students, civil society activists, artists, writers, and journalists.

 

Our relationships are both deep and broad, going far beyond Washington and Buenos Aires and touching every corner of our two nations. And as I expressed to Minister Timerman yesterday, we look forward to expanding those cultural exchanges that help broaden the understanding of our shared common values.

 

Today, over 500 U.S. companies are active in Argentina, employing about 155,000 Argentines. Given Argentina’s vast potential in so many areas, including high tech, and biotechnology, to name two, there are many opportunities for increasing the level of foreign investment here. We want to work with you to create an environment that will facilitate the investments to develop a world-class innovation based economy.

 

This morning I met with an extraordinary group of young Argentine web and social media entrepreneurs. I was extremely impressed with their vision and drive and their passion for what they do. The spirit of innovation which they embody is vital to the future of Argentina and we must all work together to ensure an environment which supports their endeavors.

 

Argentina’s public and private sector leaders know businesses do not operate in isolation. They depend on political, economic and social structures that foster expanded commerce and successful entrepreneurship. Clearly-defined policies, consistently applied, promote sustainable economic growth, build investor confidence, and increase business activity.

 

Both Argentina and the United States share the belief that democracy and the rule of law provide the foundation for strong and long-term sustainable economic growth that will help alleviate poverty and allow all citizens to fully participate in the economic lives of their countries.

 

Business leaders in this region have told us that one of the most difficult problems facing Latin America is income inequality. As we all know this is not a problem unique to Latin America. South American countries and governments have recognized the scope of the problem and have made major strides in addressing these complex issues. They are developing sound long-term economic management policies and practices and building up stable governmental institutions to reliably enforce the rule of law. Throughout the region, democracy is taking firm hold and the rule of law is increasingly enforced.

 

Direct government anti-poverty programs can be valuable as well. Argentina has made important efforts to reduce the impact of income inequality on the young through the universal allowance for children and adolescents under 18 whose parents are unemployed or working in the informal sector. The program, which requires school attendance and up-to-date vaccinations and other medical care, is still in its early stages. But it has the potential to broaden the horizons of many thousands of children and distribute the benefits of increasing prosperity more equally in the next generation. The goal of improving living conditions, health and education for underprivileged children is critical to social and economic development and the broadening of opportunity.

 

Reducing poverty is not something governments can, or should, do by themselves. Around the world, more and more private companies are making corporate social responsibility one of their core operating principles. They find that not only is it the right thing to do, but it is the smart thing do. Increasingly, consumers come to value them not only for the products they deliver, but for the services they provide to their communities. And research has shown that as consumer loyalty increases, so does profitability.

 

TOMS Shoes, which won the Secretary of State’s Award for Corporate Excellence last year for its work in Corporate Social Responsibility, provides an excellent example. TOMS Shoes was founded in 2006 by Blake Mycoskie, a young American who had traveled widely throughout Argentina. During his travels, Blake witnessed first-hand the poverty which existed in many rural communities. He wanted to find a way to help, and, particularly, to help poor children.

 

Together with his Argentine partner, he came up with an idea that was both simple and extremely creative. Inspired by a traditional Argentine shoe, he launched a new line of alpargata shoes adapted for the US market. He coupled his new business initiative with a commitment to donate one pair of shoes to a child in need, somewhere in the world, for each pair of new shoes sold. In September of this year TOMS Shoes will donate its one millionth pair of shoes to a child in need, proving the old adage that you can indeed do well by doing good. An amazing achievement in such a short period of time!

 

The company is doing great things here in Argentina, and elsewhere, to demonstrate its commitment to giving something back to the societies in which it works. Our Embassy, through its annual NGO fair, brings together NGOs with companies, other embassies, and foundations to learn more about this innovative concept. The American Chamber of Commerce and some of its leading companies are now contributing the largest share of support for the NGO Fair, ensuring its sustainability.

 

Quality education is the motor of a modern economy. For generations, Argentina’s education system has produced top-quality high school and college graduates ready to contribute in the most sophisticated technological fields. This has been one of Argentina’s great strengths, and more than 100 years ago President Sarmiento worked with Mary Peabody Mann, widow of the famed U.S. educator Horace Mann, to bring dozens of American teachers to Argentina. This joint effort helped shape Argentina’s quality public education system.

 

Next year to commemorate the 200th anniversary of President Sarmiento’s birth, our Embassy is developing a plan, using technology, to expand the ties between teaching training colleges in Argentina and their counter-parts in the United States We cooperate closely with schools and universities here, and I look forward to discussing ways to expand our cooperation during my meetings with Argentine government officials. Among other things, we want to find new ways to use technology to connect students at all levels, from elementary school to university, with their peers in both our countries so they learn more about, and from, each other and form friendships and relationships which will last a life-time.

 

We are also working to increase opportunities for Argentine citizens to learn English, as another tool to access economic and educational opportunities. For many years we have supported the outstanding English teaching work of our network of 16 binational centers across Argentina. Our efforts include the Access English Language Scholarship program, which gives scholarships to study English to high school students from disadvantaged communities. And in my meeting this morning with representatives of the technology community we discussed a number of innovative ways to help us expand the impact of this program.

 

Three hundred students from the first Access class in Argentina will finish their two-year program and graduate in December. But that’s just the beginning. The first group came from four binational centers, while the second class represents eleven centers around the country — and next year we plan to add four more locations, including Tierra del Fuego and Chaco.

 

Ambassador Martinez has told me how private companies and universities ensure that these hardworking graduates have further opportunities to learn and move ahead in life. One company, Manpower, is offering them training in preparing a resume and succeeding in a job interview. Others are offering internships and part-time jobs for Access graduates pursuing university study. Additional companies are directly sponsoring Access scholarships, and I invite all of you to join with us in this important effort.

 

In addition to an educated workforce, modern economies also require sound banking and financial systems that provide reasonable access to capital for small and medium-sized enterprises and for long-term infrastructure projects like roads, ports, railways, and airports. No country can sustain economic growth without a robust SME sector and 21st century infrastructure. International financial institutions such as the World Bank and the Inter-American Development Bank play a crucial role, but there is no substitute for a private banking system and private investment willing to lend money for the long-term for the development of critical business and infrastructure projects.

 

For years, I have engaged with Argentina’s vibrant media sector. I came to know about the courage of journalists such as Jacobo Timerman and Robert Cox, who stood up at great personal peril and spoke out for human rights. I was deeply moved by Foreign Minister Timerman’s recent comments at the Department of State in Washington. He said, “The first time I walked into this building, it was actually to ask for political asylum, so I know the work that the U.S. has done in defense of human rights during the dictatorship in Argentina, and that is something that the people of Argentina and I myself will never forget and always appreciate.” And I appreciate his sentiment, for it reminds me of the responsibility we all have to support those who stand up for human rights as he did.

 

Not surprisingly, given my background, I believe passionately in the critical role media must play in a 21st century economy. In our two countries, there is recognition that freedom of the press and freedom of expression are fundamental human rights that are essential to democracy. Today, however, we are asked to sustain these freedoms within an ever-changing media world, in part due to new technologies. In every country of the world, citizens, businesses and governments are wrestling with the impact of these developments on free expression, politics, and individual privacy. New paths are being forged as individuals in all sectors, and at all levels of society, are provided with access to information to an unprecedented degree. And media organizations everywhere are struggling to develop new business models to ensure their continued operation.

 

In times like these, when we are all navigating the uncharted territory of our new media, interconnected, 24/7 world, it is especially important for businesses and governments alike to remain anchored in core principles and values. Media businesses must uphold the highest journalistic standards, and governments must demonstrate their continued commitment to the fundamental rights and responsibilities that preserve and protect our democracies.

 

None of us has all the answers to the questions raised in this important debate, so it is all the more important that we remain grounded in our shared values of media freedom and responsibility. The United States will continue to uphold freedom of expression and media freedom as fundamental human rights, and that freedom comes with the responsibility of maintaining media standards and ethics. That is the policy of our government and a value that continues to be shared by both of our countries.

 

You know as well as I do that success today — for businesses, governments, nations, and individual citizens — must be based on relationships that cross borders and oceans. We will work hard to ensure that the relationship between the United States and Argentina becomes even stronger. This is an historic partnership of great importance for both our nations, stretching back some two centuries to the early days of independence for the United States and Argentina.

 

As we look forward, we must strengthen our partnership and find new and creative ways to enable our citizens to work together. The United States thanks Argentina for its important contributions to peacekeeping efforts around the world, especially in Haiti. In the wake of the terrible earthquake in that country, Argentina was a vital contributor to Haiti’s rebuilding and recovery efforts. Argentina is also an active contributor to the UN mission to ensure peace and stability there.

 

Argentina and the United States cooperate closely in the fight against terrorism. Both our nations have been targets of attack, and that has strengthened our partnership in efforts to combat terrorism and make our world a more secure place. Our work together to bolster security and stability has helped build a framework to combat not only terrorism, but also other security threats such as narcotics trafficking and nuclear proliferation. We appreciate Argentina’s leadership when it comes to nonproliferation, and we look forward to working with Argentina, as it hosts one of the preparatory meetings for the next Nuclear Security Summit.

 

The United States also greatly appreciates Argentina’s active engagement on human rights issues in multilateral organizations and in our regional partnerships. There are critical challenges to democracy, human rights, and social and economic justice throughout our region and around the world. Addressing these issues is essential to the stability and prosperity of this region, and to ensuring that everyone in the Americas has the opportunity to live up to his or her potential.

 

The strength of our bilateral relationship is also evident in our long-standing cooperation on science, technology and health. Our space agencies have collaborated for years on building cutting-edge satellites. Together, our two countries have established a cancer research network to study the genomes of various types of cancer, and we are working together to establish a national cancer institute in Argentina.

 

We also recently signed a bilateral energy cooperation agreement that will focus on developing clean and renewable sources of energy. As Secretary Clinton announced earlier this month after her meeting with Foreign Minister Timerman, in a few days our two governments will hold the first Joint Committee Meeting on science and technology, where we will explore further cooperation in these areas.

 

This year marks the 200th anniversary of Argentina’s May Revolution. I want to conclude by joining Secretary Clinton in congratulating Argentina on its Bicentennial and recognizing the long history of positive engagement between our two countries — a relationship based not only on the work between our governments, but also on the close collaboration between our citizens. Over the last two centuries, we have worked together to better the lives of the people of our two countries, and promote peace and prosperity amongst our neighbors.

 

I am pleased to also add that my office recently approved additional support for our Embassy’s Bicentennial programs related to constitutionalism, federalism, immigration, and the role of minorities, and I want to reiterate the commitment of the people of the United States to make our relationship for the next 200 years one of cooperation, partnership, and friendship — we look forward to working with all of you in achieving that goal.

 

As President Obama stated when he articulated a new vision for America’s engagement with the world, “We seek an equal partnership… based on mutual respect and common interests and shared values….As neighbors, we have a responsibility to each other and to our citizens. And by working together, we can take important steps forward to advance prosperity and security and liberty. That is the 21st century agenda that we come together to enact. That’s the new direction that we can pursue.”

 

Thank you.

 

26 August 2010

 

Argentina’s insurance industry needs more consolidation to grow over the coming years, the president of local market research firm CLAVES, Nelson Perez Alonso, told BNamericas.

 

The number of insurance companies in Argentina has seen a big reduction over the last few decades, but there is still around 170 companies competing in a rather small market.

 

Insurance premiums represented 2.6% of the country’s GDP last year, according to Swiss Re’s “World insurance in 2009” report. Life premiums made up only 0.5% of GDP, while non-life premiums represented 2.1%.

 

The macro economic and political situation make it very difficult for insurers to achieve significant growth organically, Perez said, adding that many Argentines also have a limited capacity to buy insurance and that many lack the awareness of the importance of having insurance coverage.

 

The are several small insurers in Argentina that are struggling and constantly posting underwriting losses, and it would be better for the industry to have fewer and stronger players – and some small “boutique” players that focus on specific niches, he said.

 

Perez said that he is pessimistic about the outlook for 2011 due to the presidential elections in October next year, as well as rising inflation and an economy that will continue to be driven by short-term consumption.

 

The elections will prompt many industries to hold back on major investment decisions and the population at large will continue to consume instead of saving because “it’s cheaper to buy today than tomorrow” due to the country’s high inflation, noted Perez.

Most economists estimate inflation to be at 20-25% this year while the government stubbornly sticks to its estimate of 10-11% through national statistics agency Indec. A survey this month from local university Torcuato Di Tella said that people expect inflation to be at 25% during the next 12 months – the same level predicted in the July survey.

 

Bank of AmericaMerrill Lynch said in a recent report that it expects inflation in Argentina to climb to 27% next year, partly due to increased public spending during the election campaign.

 

 

26 August 2010

 

Argentina’s financial system has suffered through many crises over the last decades, but the devastating crisis in late 2001 and 2002 when the government froze deposits and incurred a historic default, brought the system to the brink of destruction. At the height of that crisis, many Argentines swore to never again put a peso into a bank account and several foreign banks left the country, like Canada’s Scotiabank (NYSE: BNS) and French bank Credit Agricole.

 

However, the financial system and South America’s second largest economy recovered much faster than most optimistic observers would have expected. Gradually, people and companies started to take out loans and make deposits again – and the economy began growing at impressive rates.

 

Today, banks are highly profitable both in terms of ROA and ROE, very liquid and have capital adequacy ratios well above the legal minimums. The financial system also showed its resilience during the global crisis and economic downturn in 2008 and last year, which did not have any significant impact on banks’ financial health or performance.

 

The solid financial health of the country’s major private sector banks and their strong profitability have put them on the radar screen of banks that are looking at expanding in Latin America. Argentina is also one of the countries in the region with the lowest level of bank penetration with loans only representing around 13% of GDP, which could mean ample room for loan growth.

 

The only difference is that this time, the buyers will not come from the US and Europe as was the case in the past, but instead from developing countries, such as Brazil and maybe also China in the longer term.

 

M&A IN 2010 AND 2011

 

In a recent research report from UBS (NYSE: UBS), the country was singled out as one of the Latin American markets where Brazil’s largest bank, federally-controlled Banco do Brasil (BB), and the biggest private sector bank Itau Unibanco (NYSE:ITUB) could make purchases.

 

BB reached an agreement earlier this year to buy a 51% stake in Banco Patagonia, Argentina’s 14th biggest bank at the end of May in terms of assets. And Itau Unibanco CEO Roberto Setubal said last week that the bank was looking to expand its footprint in the region’s retail banking market, which fueled speculation that some banks in Argentina could become targets. Long before merging with Unibanco in November 2008, Itau purchased local bank Banco del Buen Ayre in Argentina. The bank was later rebranded as Itau Argentina and ranked as the country’s 16th largest bank in terms of assets at end-May.

 

Brazil’s second biggest private bank Bradesco (NYSE: BBD) has stated that it will focus on organic growth in its home market during the coming years. So the question is if BB and Itau Unibanco really want more exposure to Argentina?

 

“On the one hand you may see more deals in the Argentine banking sector, but this is by no means a certainty. The Argentine banks are well capitalized and benefiting from accelerating growth. They don’t need to find partners or to sell – the sector is doing quite well,” Mark Rosen, head of the Latin American financial institutions group at Bank of AmericaMerrill Lynch, told BNamericas.

 

With the size the Brazilian banks bring to the table, they may be tempted to put some of that force towards getting more exposure to the strong profitability at Argentina’s largest private banks, noted Marcelo Bastante, a partner at Deloitte Argentina’s financial services area.

 

Deutsche Bank (NYSE: DB) said in a report this month that it expects the Argentine banks it covers to report an average ROE of 20.6% this year and 21.7% in 2011. The investment bank rates Grupo Financiero Galicia (Nasdaq: GGAL) – owner of Banco Galicia – Banco Macro (NYSE: BMA) and BBVA Banco Frances (NYSE: BFR).

 

Norberto Nacuzzi, partner and head of Ernst & Young’s financial services area in Buenos Aires, also believes that the largest Brazilian banks will continue to look at Argentina for acquisitions as a way to leverage their large size and also because of a currently favorable exchange rate.

 

AN UNCERTAIN 2011

 

Despite the draw of the Argentine market, there are several factors that may give the Brazilian banks pause before wanting to make additional acquisitions in Argentina in the near term.

 

Argentina will hold presidential elections in October next year and this will add to its almost chronic political risk – something that could disrupt M&A negotiations, particularly if prices seem to get irrationally low and Argentine owners do not see a reason to sell.

 

There are also no less than three bills in congress that all aim at reforming the financial system to the benefit of the consumer.

 

The most controversial of the three, from the center-leftist NE political bloc, would limit each private sector bank’s loan and deposit market share to 8%, impose interest rate ceilings on certain loans, force banks to open branches and offer services in remote areas as well as earmark 38% of their lending to SMEs and 2% for microlending.

 

Bankers in Buenos Aires who would not speak on the record on this issue said that the bill is very radical and will therefore probably face problems in becoming law in its current form. But they added that “anything is possible” in Argentina, especially during an election year.

 

The same bankers said that this bill will most likely be debated by congress in 2011 due to this year’s busy legislative agenda.

 

By Charles Newbery

26 August 2010

 

Buenos Aires (Platts)–26Aug2010/101 pm EDT/1701 GMT

 

Argentina’s leading oil refiners have dropped diesel and gasoline prices at the pump in response to pressure from the government, state newswire Telam reported Thursday.

 

ExxonMobil, Shell, Brazil’s Petrobras and Spain’s Repsol peeled back recent hikes to return prices to July 31 levels following a call from the government earlier this month to do so or face fines and the possible closure of refineries, Telam said, citing unnamed sources close to the commerce secretary.

 

The sources said inspections on Wednesday confirmed the cuts. Guillermo Moreno, the commerce secretary, could not be reached for comment.

 

The government has the power to order price cuts if it believes refiners are limiting output.

 

Diesel and gasoline prices have shot up by as much as 30% this year, depending on the product.

 

On average, the pre-tax price of gasoline rose 9.6% to Pesos 2.29/liter ($0.58/l) in April from Pesos 2.09/l at the start of the year, according to the latest data from energy research company Montamat y Asociados in Buenos Aires. That’s more than double the average between 2003 and 2008, when government controls kept the price at an average of Peso 1.00/l.

 

Diesel rose 8.3% to Pesos 2.08/l in April from Pesos 1.92/l at the start of the year, according to Montamat.

 

Crude oil processing at Argentina’s refineries fell 0.1% in the first seven months of this year compared with the January-July period of 2009, according to the latest government figures.

 

Argentina is largely self-sufficient in refined product supplies, exporting surplus gasoline and 10% of its 620,000 b/d crude output. It imports diesel and fuel oil at times of peak farming, manufacturing and power plant demand mostly during the winter months of June to August. The country’s refineries used 85.8% of installed capacity in July.

 

By Nicolas Misculin

26 August 2010

 

* Opposition bill would raise levies by 10 points

* Biodiesel has lower export tax to promote industry

 

BUENOS AIRES, Aug 26 (Reuters) – Argentine biodiesel producers fear a proposal by opposition lawmakers to hike export taxes on the fuel could erode profit margins in the leading global supplier, industry sources said on Thursday.

 

Plentiful soybean oil supplies, low costs and a favorable export tax regime have spurred a rapid increase in production capacity in the South American country, which began exporting biodiesel in significant quantities just three years ago.

 

Opposition lawmakers agreed on the outlines of a bill to cut export taxes on soy, corn and wheat. However, the bill would tax biodiesel at the same rate as soyoil and meal, meaning the levy would rise to 27 percent.

 

Argentine shipments of the plant-based fuel currently face an export levy of 20 percent and also get a rebate. That compares with 32 percent for soyoil exports.

 

“There’s nervousness, there’s a lot of tension in the sector,” said one industry source, who asked not to be named.

 

The multibillion-dollar export taxes on grains were at the center of a unruly rebellion by farmers two years ago, and most of them support the opposition-backed proposal to reduce or eliminate the levies.

 

However, the bill must still be approved by both houses of Congress and some sources in the vegetable oil industry have dismissed the proposed tax hike on biodiesel as an oversight, saying they are confident it will be altered.

 

“It would be worrying if this type of measure prospered. It’s important that biodiesel has a tax differential (with soyoil) so the industry can be developed,” another industry source said, again asking not to be identified.

 

“We’re confident that this is a mistake and that it’ll be modified,” he added.

 

Argentina is expected to produce a record 2.0 million tonnes of biodiesel this year, climbing to 2.5 million tonnes in 2011, the head of the industry group Carbio told Reuters in an interview last month. [ID:nN23143212]

 

The opposition-led bill to cut grains export taxes would dent state tax revenue and some political analysts think President Cristina Fernandez could veto the measure if it were approved in both congressional chambers.

 

 

 

Cristina Fernandez de Kirchner took over the presidency from her husband, Nestor Kirchner (2003–07), on December 10th 2007 for a four-year term. Ms Fernandez and her husband belong to the Frente para la Victoria (FV) faction of the Partido Justicialista (PJ), within the Peronist movement.

 

The Kirchners are practically co-governing, and Mr Kirchner is thought to retain ambitions to return to the presidency in the October 2011 election. Although the FV remains the most widely represented party, it no longer has the necessary majority to pass legislation following its losses in the June 2009 mid-term elections. The party’s mounting political difficulties have reflected tensions with the farming community, the disintegration of alliances with state governors and the toll of the economic downturn.

 

Ms Fernandez has continued the expansionary fiscal and monetary strategies pursued by her husband, and her administration has overseen a general deterioration in the investment climate. Among the factors that have weakened the policy environment are the continued application of price, trade and foreign-exchange controls in an attempt to manage the distortions arising from expansionary macroeconomic policies. These have dampened investment and fuelled doubt about the government’s creditworthiness and fiscal strength.

 

The government’s attempts to extend the reach of the state in the economy and tap new resources to finance spending have generated controversy and exposed institutional weaknesses. Its use of foreign-exchange reserves to make external debt payments in 2010 has eroded the independence of the central bank and created political divisions. Moreover, the possibility of more nationalisations of private-sector assets remains, following the takeover by the government of the private pension funds in November 2008.

 

Argentina’s protectionist trade measures have also heightened tensions with some of its principal trading partners, including Brazil, China and the European Union. Since May 2010, food exporters from Brazil and the EU have claimed that Argentina’s government has slowed the passage of these goods across the border—allegedly to protect the competitiveness of local industry. This had not become official policy as at July 2010, however, and the government denies that it is pursuing such protectionist strategies. Still, on July 5th 2010, the EU formally complained to the World Trade Organisation’s Council for Trade in Goods. Meanwhile, after Brazil threatened trade retaliations, relations appear to have eased, with both countries now working to boost trade denominated in their respective currencies, away from the US dollar.

 

As at July 2010 China and Argentina are still engaged in a dispute that has resulted in China’s suspension of soya-oil imports from Argentina. Argentina has traditionally been one of China’s leading suppliers of soya oil, and the ban comes at a time when Chinese imports of this commodity are on the rise. Nonetheless, and despite the ongoing disagreement, both governments agreed in mid-July 2010 to foster bilateral economic co-operation. Ms Fernandez and China’s President Hu Jintao signed 18 co-operation agreements to facilitate Chinese investment in infrastructure, railway and energy projects in Argentina.

 

The Economist Intelligence Unit expects an extended period of political tension in the run-up to the presidential election in October 2011, as relations between the government and the opposition-led Congress deteriorate and the risk of public protest rises. Within Congress, tensions will stem from the opposition’s determination to restrain the power of the increasingly unpredictable, authoritarian approach of the present government.

 

The cumbersome bureaucracy of Argentina’s political affairs often impedes private-sector development. According to the World Bank’s Doing Business 2010 survey—which studies economies’ business environment through indicators such as starting a business, dealing with permits, getting credit, paying taxes and enforcing contracts—Argentina ranked in 118th place among 183 countries in terms of the overall ease of doing business. It had ranked higher in 2009, in 112th place.

 

The quality of the judiciary and civil service are subject to political intervention. Contractual agreements among the private sector are generally upheld, but dealings with the government remain somewhat insecure. And corruption is still common. In a prominent corruption scandal in 2007, the state-owned oil and gas company, Energia Argentina Sociedad Anonima (Enarsa), was allegedly involved in the receipt of US$800,000 from the government of Venezuela for Ms Fernandez’s presidential campaign. More recently, in June 2010, the Argentina’s former ambassador to Venezuela, Eduardo Sadous, exposed more shady commercial ties with Venezuela when he publicly denounced bribes accepted by Argentina’s government as payment for allowing businesses to export to Venezuela. This was followed, in the same month, by the surprise resignation of Jorge Taiana, the foreign minister, from his post. Mr Taiana had granted permission to Mr Sadous to testify before Congress, and there has been some speculation that Mr Taiana, formerly one of the Kirchner’s most loyal officials, was forced out of the position.

 

For more information on political conditions, see the Economist Intelligence Unit’s Country Report Argentina.

 

Argentina’s gross domestic product (GDP) growth slowed to 0.9% in real terms in 2009 after having expanded by an annual average of 8.5% during 2003–08, according to figures from the Ministry of Economy and Public Finance (Ministerio de Economia y Finanzas Publicas—MEcon). The slowdown in the domestic economy was induced by the deepening of the international financial crisis—which tightened the flow of credit and constrained global trading activity—and by the increasing distortions arising from restrictions placed on the local market by Argentina’s government.

 

The economy showed signs of recovery during the first five months of 2010. The monthly indicator for economic activity (Estimador Mensual de la Actividad Economica) grew by 8.6%, year-on-year, in January–May 2010, according to the National Statistics and Census Institute (Instituto Nacional de Estadistica y Censos—INDEC); rising public spending, export revenue, industrial production and retail sales supported this growth. But it is unlikely that the strength of the recovery can continue at this pace, since the expansionary focus of the government’s economic policies is not sustainable. The Economist Intelligence Unit forecasts that Argentina’s economy will expand by 6.8% in 2010 and 4% in 2011.

 

Macroeconomic instability and an unpredictable policy environment constrain economic growth. High levels of government spending are putting upward pressure on the inflation rate. Furthermore, the domestic economy is increasingly subject to state intervention as evidenced by growing trade protectionism and the continued use of price and foreign-exchange controls.

 

With a total population of 40.13m in 2009, Argentina’s average GDP per capita (in terms of purchasing power parity) is US$14,560—above the US$11,000 average in the Latin America and Caribbean region. The economy is primarily services based: 60.3% of economic activity in 2009 originated from the services sector. Industry activity makes up 32.1% of GDP in 2009, and agriculture represented 7.6% of GDP. However, agriculture’s share of GDP has fallen from 9.9% in 2008, because of both a drought and continued tensions between the sector and the government over the production and export of commodities.

 

Official inflation statistics remain widely discredited and are perceived to understate the actual rate of inflation; even so, both official data and private estimates indicate an acceleration in the rate of inflation during the first five months of 2010, as fiscal expansion continues. According to official figures from INDEC, the 12-month consumer-price-inflation rate rose to 11% in June 2010, from 7.7% in December 2009. Private estimates, however, put this figure about 2–3 times higher. The government generated intense controversy in 2010 when—seeking sources of cash to finance expenditures—it tapped into the foreign-exchange reserves held the by the central bank (Banco Central de la Republica Argentina—BCRA) to make payments on externally held debt. (See State role in the economy.)

 

Argentina ran a current-account surplus of 3.7% of GDP in 2009, led by a positive trade balance. However, export activity in 2009 was hit by weaker external demand and lower prices for the country’s agricultural commodity exports from their peak in 2008. The value of exports contracted by 6.4% in real terms in 2009. However, both the value and volume of exports rose during the first five months of 2010, despite ongoing trade disputes stemming from Argentina’s protectionist trade policies.

 

The government’s budget deficit was 0.6% of GDP in 2009, and the Economist Intelligence Unit forecasts that it will widen to a deficit of 2.8% of GDP in 2010 as government spending continues to rise. Public finances are exposed to volatility in commodity prices and export performance, given the tax system’s dependence on export-tax revenues. Net public debt as a share of GDP stood at 48.6% in 2009, and we expect it to rise to 51.4% in 2010.

 

On June 22nd 2010, and after numerous delays, the government completed its debt exchange for the outstanding sovereign bonds that it defaulted on in 2001. With the acceptance rate for the bond swap reaching 66%, the majority (92.4%) of the almost US$100bn in defaulted sovereign debt has now been restructured. The government had previously conducted a debt restructuring in 2005. The resolution is expected to re-open the country’s access to international capital markets, from which it has been cut-off since its 2001 default during the domestic banking and currency crisis.

 

The government’s cost of borrowing will probably remain high, however, particularly because of the uncertainty surrounding economic policymaking and the government’s weak credibility in managing public finances. Some US$6.7bn of the defaulted sovereign debt is still held by the Paris Club, a group of creditor nations that typically requires debtors to have an agreement with the International Monetary Fund in order to reschedule debt payments owed to them. But the present government resists the IMF’s policy recommendations and any programme with the IMF that would require structural reforms. Combined with the ongoing stress in global financial markets, these factors are expected to maintain the high spread on sovereign bonds in international capital markets. In turn, the private sector’s borrowing abilities could be crowded out in the domestic market as the government continues to finance its spending locally; in the international markets, it will be required to pay a high country-risk premium.

 

The stock of outstanding credit to the private sector issued by the domestic banking sector totalled US$159.9bn at end-June 2010, according to the Central Bank of the Republic (Banco Central de la Republica Argentina). In real (inflation-adjusted) terms—using official government inflation statistics, which probably under-report actual price increases—credit expanded by 6.5% year-on-year. More than likely, however, credit extensions to the private sector contracted in real annual terms in 2009 through the first two quarters of 2010. Some 55% of bank credit allocated to the private sector goes to companies.

 

The value of the peso is determined by the market, under a floating exchange-rate regime established on January 6th 2002. The previous currency board—which had pegged the peso to the US dollar at Ps1:US$1 since April 1991—was removed during the 2001–02 twin crisis (banking and currency crises) in favour of a more flexible exchange-rate management system.

 

The peso was trading at Ps3.93:US$1 at end-June 2010, slightly depreciating from Ps3.82:US$1 at end-2009 and Ps3.79:US$1 at end-June 2009. The Economist Intelligence Unit projects a further steady weakening of the peso in 2010–11, reflecting fiscal imbalances, lower capital inflows and a policy push for a weaker domestic currency to support export competitiveness. Our projection of an exchange rate of Ps4.00:US$1 at end-2010 and Ps4.40:US$1 at end-2011 implies that, in real trade-weighted terms, the exchange rate will remain relatively stable. At these levels, the peso will be more than 40% weaker than its average real trade-weighted value over the past 15 years. However, there is a risk of a sharper depreciation, given increasing fiscal imbalances, limited room for policy manoeuvre and ebbing market confidence.

 

The central bank’s stock of foreign reserves stood at US$50bn on July 8th 2010, up from US$47.5bn at end-June 2009 and US$46.3bn at end-2008. The central bank (Banco Central de la Republica Argentina—BCRA) has been making large US dollar purchases as it attempts to curb the appreciation of the peso. In a controversial move that compromised the central bank’s independence from the executive branch, the government has used US$6.6bn in foreign-exchange reserves held by the BCRA to make external debt payments in 2010.

 

The state’s role in the economy has grown significantly since the beginning of Néstor Kirchner’s administration (2003–07). Government involvement under Mr Kirchner included fixing prices and wages and providing subsidies for energy and transportation, policies that have created market distortions. The present administration of his wife, Cristina Fernández de Kirchner, has followed a similar pattern. Under Ms Fernández, the government has continued to pressure sectors to fix prices and wages as a way to contain rising inflationary pressures. Although subsidies have been eased as public finances have grown increasingly strained, her administration has, over the past two years, led a number of controversial initiatives to support the government’s fiscal position amid expansionary spending. These have extended the reach of the state in the economy while also raising uncertainty regarding the direction of government policy and weakening institutions.

 

One of Ms Fernández’s most visible attempts to boost government revenues began in March 2008 with an unsuccessful and politically costly attempt to impose a sliding export tax on agricultural products such as grains and oilseeds. Intense opposition to this tax triggered a farmers’ strike—a standoff that started in March 2008 and continued until mid-July 2008—that caused shortages of food in cities, a fall in tax revenue and a collapse in the president’s approval rating. These problems—and the widespread protests that followed throughout the country—forced the government to backtrack, delegating the authority to increase export taxes to the Senate. On July 17th 2008, the Senate voted against the sliding tax in a tie-breaking vote decided by Julio Cobos, the vice-president. On July 21st 2008, the government suspended the administrative measure that had originally imposed the sliding tax, ending the strike and maintaining the fixed export taxes. As at June 2010, a 35% fixed tax still applies to soya products but varies for other goods. The average rates are as follows: 18.8% on vegetables and fruits, 29.4% on animal and vegetable oils and fats, and 23.2% on industrial food and beverages.

 

In 2010 the government weakened the independence of the central bank (Banco Central de la República Argentina—BCRA) from the executive branch by using US$6.6bn in foreign-exchange reserves held by the BCRA to make external debt payments. BCRA’s president, Martín Redrado, was dismissed following the central bank’s refusal to accept government attempts to appropriate the funds, and he was replaced in February 2010 by Mercedes Marcó del Pont, a political ally of the administration. The BCRA is, according to its charter, an autonomous institution—free from ties with other areas of government—and Ms Fernández’s conflict with the BCRA has undermined its institutional strength and exposed the unpredictability of government policies. The move also raised concerns over the government’s creditworthiness, despite the fact that it used the foreign-exchange reserves to build confidence in the country’s capacity to repay its sovereign debt. (Argentina has been locked out of accessing finance in the international capital markets since the sovereign-debt default in December 2001.)

 

The new BCRA president, Ms Marcó del Pont, was previously the president of the state-owned Banco de la Nación, the largest bank in terms of assets in Argentina. A former legislator, she presented a failed reform to Congress in 2007 to modify the BCRA’s mandate to include the promotion of economic growth to the primary mandate of preserving the value of the currency. Since her appointment, she has stated that the central bank can have operational autonomy but cannot be independent of other policymaking areas.

 

The possibility of other nationalisations persists, following the government’s controversial takeover of the private pension-fund system in 2008, which was also meant to prop up the government’s fiscal balance. When the administration nationalised the country’s 14-year-old private pension funds in November 2008, this provided the state with US$29bn in new assets, a portion of which has been spent on social programmes and reinvested in the productive sector. The state now oversees total pension assets of US$37.8bn.

 

The regulatory framework for public utilities is subject to state intervention, and the government has used price controls to contain rising pressures on prices. Mandatory price controls are in place for the electricity, natural-gas and public-transport sectors, among others. “Voluntary” price controls are also in place for other industries (see Price controls).

 

As a result of price regulations on utilities and natural gas, Argentina has had some of the lowest energy prices in the world. This, in turn, has served to discourage private investment and hinder the longer-term development of the sector. The disparity between energy companies’ costs and actual revenue has led, starting in 2004, to a severe domestic energy crisis. A report published in April 2009 by eight former secretaries of energy claimed that Argentina’s energy sector has severe structural problems and that the country runs the risk of losing its energy self-sufficiency as a result. In an attempt to ensure supply, the government began forcing companies to reduce gas exports to Chile and Uruguay in March 2004, a policy that continued through mid-2010. The government has also resorted to importing diesel fuel to be allocated to thermal generators to lower the use of gas among households and industry in the winter. Electricity prices were also raised in August 2008, for the first time since the country’s financial crisis in 2001–02. The government had promised in April 2009 to hike natural-gas prices by 45%, but it had still not implemented this rise as at July 2010.

 

In July 2007 the government intervened in Metrogas (Argentina’s largest natural-gas distributor, which filed for bankruptcy in June 2010) on the basis of the Supply Law (Ley de Abastecimiento, Law 20,680). In 1974 the Supply Law established that, in the event of an urgent need, the government may temporarily take over any company in any sector that is not offering an adequate product supply. (The government subsequently retreated from Metrogas later in 2007.) Also under the Supply Law, a fine of Ps23m was imposed on Shell Oil in January 2008 for inadequate supplies to the diesel market. The Supply Law can be applied only after Congress declares a national supply emergency (Decree 2,284 in 1997).

 

Amid the country’s energy crisis, former President Néstor Kirchner (2003–07) established in 2005 Argentina’s state-owned oil and gas company (Energía Argentina Sociedad Anónima—Enarsa). At the time of its inception, 53% of the company was put under the ownership of the federal government, 35% under private ownership via shares issued on the stockmarket and 12% under the control of provincial governments.

 

In January 2006 Enarsa signed an agreement with Repsol-YPF (Spain), Petrobrás (Brazil) and Petrouruguay (Uruguay) for exploration off the southern coast of Buenos Aires province. A similar agreement was reached in August 2008 with Sipetrol (Chile) and Repsol-YPF for an oilfield off the southern coast of Santa Cruz, in the Patagonia region. Four new exploration blocks of oilfields off Patagonia were auctioned off in December 2008 to international companies, including Petrobrás (Brazil), PanAmerican Energy and Repsol-YPF.

 

In June 2008 the explorations of Enarsa, through a memorandum of understanding with PDVSA (Venezuela’s state-owned oil company), resulted in the discovery of 450m–500m cubic metres of petroleum in the Orinoco Field’s Block 6 (in, and owned by, Venezuela). Enarsa has the right to explore offshore and is planning to do so but, as at July 2010, it was still awaiting a formal certification from the Venezuelan government to begin exploration.

 

Enarsa was allegedly involved in a corruption scandal in which a suitcase filled with US$800,000 was given in 2007 by the government of Venezuela to Ms Fernández’s presidential campaign. Enarsa rented the plane in which the PDVSA executives and the suitcase handler arrived at the international airport in Argentina.

 

The federal government continues to have a significant presence in the banking sector. According to the central bank (Banco Central de la República Argentina—BCRA), 12 of the country’s 54 banks (33 domestic-owned and 21 foreign-owned) are owned by the government. Of these state-run banks, ten are provincial banks and two are national. The two national banks are Banco de la Nación, the country’s largest bank in terms of assets, and Banco de Inversion y Comercio Exterior (BICE), a trade bank.

 

Argentina’s constitution provides for indemnification for expropriation of property and mandates a prior state deposit of 30% of the value of the property to be expropriated. The Valuations Tribunal sets the final price. Investors in Argentina generally do not fear expropriation. However, in December 2008, after months of negotiations on the sale price, Argentina’s Congress voted to expropriate the national airline, Aerolíneas Argentinas, from Marsans Group of Spain. The government claimed that the company was US$800m in arrears and was not fulfilling its contract signed in 2001. Marsans threatened to take the case to a World Bank tribunal but came to an informal settlement with the government in February 2009. The government has yet to turn a profit with the state airline. In the first quarter of 2010, Aerolíneas Argentina had an operating deficit of US$103m, a 28% year-on-year loss and 56% loss compared with the same period in 2008 (when it still belonged to Marsans Group).

 

Major state-owned enterprises

Company                                       State ownership (%)

Aerolíneas Argentinas                         100

Arsat (satellites)                            100

Banco de Inversión y Comercio Exterior (BICE) 100

Banco Ciudad (Buenos Aires)                   100

Banco de Córdoba                              100

Banco de la Nación                            100

Banco Provincia de Buenos Aires               100

Correo Argentino (postal service)             100

EPEC (electricity)                            100

Líneas Aéreas Federales (airlines)            100

Lotería Nacional (lottery/casino)             100

Nación AFJP (pension fund)                    100

Nucleoelectrica (nuclear-power plants)        100

Telam (news agency)                           100

Yacretá (dam)                                 100

Tandanor                                      90

Aysa (water and sewage)                       80

Banco Hipotecario                             60

Enarsa (energy)                               53

Central Dique (dam)                           49

Central Termica Guemes (electricity)          30

Papel Prensa (publisher)                      27

Piedra del Auila (electricity)                26

Aeropuertos Argentina 2000                    20

Ferro Expreso Pampeano (railway)              16

Ferrosur (railway)                            16

Nuevo Central Argentino (railway)             16

Central Termica Patagonia (electricity)       13

Transpa (electricity)                         6

Source: Company reports.

 

Argentina’s investment climate deteriorated in 2009 amid waning market confidence, growing policy uncertainty and escalating state intervention in the economy. An unpredictable policy framework and weak institutions, in addition to macroeconomic instability, have suppressed investor interest. The domestic economy is increasingly subject to trade protectionism and the continuing use of price and foreign-exchange controls, in an attempt to control the distortions arising from expansionary fiscal and monetary policies.

 

Lower international financial flows and a weakened domestic business environment put a damper on inflows of foreign direct investment (FDI) to Argentina in 2009. Gross FDI inflows to Argentina plummeted to US$4bn in 2009, according to the National Statistics and Census Institute (Instituto Nacional de Estadistica y Censos—INDEC), from US$9.7bn in 2008, which was the highest amount of FDI inflows recorded since 2000.

 

Inflows of FDI to Argentina in 2009 accounted for 6.9% of the total entering Latin America, according to the United Nations Economic Commission for Latin America and the Caribbean (ECLAC). The countries in the region that received more FDI in 2009 were Brazil (US$25.9bn, 36.6% of total inflows), Chile (US$12.7bn, 17.9%), Mexico (US$11.4bn, 16.1%) and Colombia (US$7.2bn, 10.2%).

 

According to the latest available disaggregated figures from the central bank (Banco Central de la Republica Argentina—BCRA), the manufacturing sector attracted investment in 2008 that amounted to US$5.17bn (or 53.3% of total inflows of US$9.7bn); followed by financial services (US$1.14bn, or 11.8%); infrastructure (US$891m, or 9.2%); trade and services (US$819m, or 8.4%); agriculture (US$637m, or 6.6%); and mining (US$544m, or 5.6%).

 

The United States and Brazil were the leading investors in Argentina during 2008, allocating US$1.60bn and US$1.58bn in FDI, respectively, according to the BCRA. Chile invested US$824m in Argentina in 2008, followed by the Netherlands (US$808m), Switzerland (US$679m), Spain (US$545m) and Germany (US$411m).

 

Brazilian investment in Argentina has increased significantly over the last few years. Indeed, the amount of Brazilian-sourced FDI inflows in 2008 was almost double the amount invested in 2007 (US$861m) and nearly four-fold the amount invested in 2006 (US$404m). The bulk (83%) of all Brazilian investment in Argentina has been directed to manufacturing.

 

Capital controls apply to some foreign investments. Foreign direct investments are not subject to minimum-stay or deposit requirements. However, capital inflows—those directed to portfolio investments in debt and equity securities—must remain in the country for at least 365 days. In addition, 30% of capital inflows must be deposited in an interest-free US-dollar account with the central bank for one year.

 

Foreign investors receive the same legal treatment as local investors (Decree Law 1,853, September 1993). Foreigners may invest in most kinds of economic activity in Argentina, including industrial, mining, agricultural, commercial and financial activities, the rendering of services, or other fields connected with the production and interchange of goods and services. The only sectors restricted to foreign-investor participation are radio broadcasting, fishing, domestic transport, acquisition of real property in border areas, and weapons and ammunition.

 

Since 2003 Argentina limits foreign ownership of “cultural goods” to 30%, which includes media and Internet companies. An exception exists for investors whose countries allow more than 30% foreign ownership of their cultural goods. Transportation, domestic air- and maritime-transport services are reserved to national companies, though exceptions are possible. Foreign banks may set up local branches without restriction, even if a foreign bank’s home country does not grant reciprocal treatment to financial institutions from Argentina (Decree 146 of January 1994).

 

A new, controversial Audiovisual Communication Services Law (Law 26,522), promulgated on October 10th 2009, could further limit participation by foreign companies in the media sector; however, the law remained suspended by judicial order as at July 2010. The law establishes content requirements (domestic and foreign) for different types of licences. For example, 70% of the production content for companies with radio licences must be of national origin, and 30% of music must be of national origin (of which 50% must be independent) and 50% of news must be local. Licensed private television operators must transmit a minimum of 60% national content, 30% local news, and 10–30% local independent content, depending on the category. Major controversy surrounded the drafting of this law since it originally included the telecommunications sector and would have greatly affected big international companies, favouring Telecom Argentina (Italy/Argentina) over Telefonica (Spain) and Claro (Mexico).

 

Foreign companies participated extensively in Argentina’s massive privatisation programme in the 1990s, increasing investment stakes mostly in telecoms, oil, electric power, gas, transport, and water and sewers. The government took a tougher stance towards some foreign companies in the years following the country’s twin crises (banking and currency) in 2001.

 

Offshore companies are prohibited from setting up in Buenos Aires (Resolution 2/2005, February 2005), and all new foreign companies must provide information to the government about their shareholders (Resolution 3/2005, March 2005). Resolution 20/2004, published in September 2004, requires companies to provide insurance should a board member engage in practices that entail monetary damage to shareholders or third parties. Such insurance can be in the form of bonds or deposited cash set aside for such a purpose or an actual insurance policy. Companies are incurring substantial legal fees to comply with these new regulations.

 

Ford Motor, a US carmaker, announced in April 2010 a new Ps1bn (US$250m) investment in its operations in Argentina to be made over 2010–12. The investment will be for the production of a new vehicle model and to fund quality upgrades and improvements at the Ford Pacheco plant in Buenos Aires province. The plant will manufacture this new vehicle for Ford’s Latin America markets. This project fits into Ford’s global corporate plans, which include a long-term growth strategy for South America and call for Ford Argentina to play a key role in supplying key products to the regional marketplace.

 

Troy Resources (Australia), a mining company, purchased the Casposo gold-silver deposit in San Juan province, in May 2009. The US$100m purchase included the acquisition of Intrepid Minerals (a Canadian-owned subsidiary that has now been renamed Troy Resources Argentina Ltd), which holds the project through its Argentinian branch in San Juan. With the acquisition and development of Casposo, Troy Resources is entering a renewed growth phase that aims to lift the company’s annual gold production above 100,000 ounces. The company expects to pour the first gold bars at Casposo in September 2010.

 

Orocobre (Australia), a mining company, in September 2009 invested in a project to mine potassium and lithium salts in Jujuy province. The project will start in 2011 and is to produce 35,000 tonnes of minerals per year. Orocobre is also interested in expanding its investments in Argentina to include the exploration of copper and gold.

 

Capital International’s (US) private-equity unit acquired a 15% stake in El Tejar, a giant agriculture-and-livestock company, for US$150m, in December 2009. El Tejar designs, organises, and manages grain- and meat-production systems. Although it is based in Argentina, it also has operations in Bolivia, Brazil, Uruguay and Paraguay.

 

Vale (Brazil), a mining company, purchased Green Mineral Resources from Rio Tinto, a British-Australian mining company, for US$850m, in February 2009. Green Mineral Resources owns the Colorado Project (Argentina) and the Regina Project (Canada). Vale’s acquisition of potash assets is aligned with the company’s strategy to become a large producer of fertilisers. Vale will begin construction of the Rio Colorado project in Argentina’s western Mendoza province in 2010, and it expects to start production of potash from the mine in the second half of 2013.

 

Votorantim (Brazil), an industrial conglomerate, acquired a 50% stake in Cementos Avellaneda, a cement company, for US$200m, in 2009. Votorantim already has a 28% stake in Aceros Bragados (AcerBrag), the third-largest producer of long steel (such as steel bars, rods, and wires) in Argentina.

 

Xstrata (Switzerland/UK) invested US$10m during 2009 in its Pachon mine in Calingasta. According to studies, the mine has the potential to produce an annual average of 200,000 tonnes of copper for 20 years. The company has promised new investments in the mine totalling US$1.5bn in 2010–12.

 

Barrick Gold, a Canadian mining company traded on the Toronto and New York stock exchanges, announced in May 2009 that its mining operations at the Pascua Lama mine—which straddles Argentina and Chile and has large deposits of gold and silver—was ready to begin construction. After many years of community consultation, submission of environmental impact assessments (EIAs) and approvals from the regional environmental authorities, the company finalised the project’s economic considerations, received construction permits, resolved outstanding fiscal matters with the governments of Chile and Argentina, and has now begun active construction. Barrick believes the construction phase alone will generate 5,500 jobs, followed by an additional 1,600 jobs during its operational phase, which is to last more than 25 years. Production is to begin in the first quarter of 2013.

 

Petrobras (Brazil) announced in October 2008 an investment of US$300m in production of and US$50m in exploration for gas in Argentina’s Patagonia region. To carry out its activity, Petrobras will join forces with Fomicruz, a company owned by the government of Santa Cruz province. The investments are in addition to commitments of US$879m made by Petrobras in June 2007 to explore Argentina’s offshore platform. Despite the downturn, in February 2010 Petrobras announced US$470m in investment plans in Argentina through 2013.

 

Argentina is party to many free-trade and investment-protection agreements. The country’s most significant international treaty is with the Southern Common Market (Mercado Comun del Sur—Mercosur) trading bloc, of which Argentina, Brazil, Paraguay and Uruguay are full members. Argentina has signed bilateral investment-protection treaties with 59 partners, 54 of which were active in mid-2010 (see below).

 

The Mercosur free-trade pact has been in force since January 1st 1995. Bolivia, Chile and Peru are associate Mercosur members. Venezuela has been a non-voting member since 2006; in December 2009, the country received approval from Brazil’s Congress to become a full voting member. In mid-2010 Venezuela was still awaiting approval from Paraguay’s Senate, where the majority opposes the country’s full admission to the bloc.

 

The Ouro Preto Protocol of December 1994 granted Mercosur the status of an international corporation, allowing it to sign agreements with third countries or other economic groups. Mercosur has signed agreements with other Latin American countries such as Bolivia, Chile, Colombia, Costa Rica, Ecuador, El Salvador, Guatemala, Honduras, Mexico, Nicaragua and Peru.

 

Mercosur signed a less ambitious free-trade agreement with Israel in December 2007; it entered into force on June 1st 2010. This is the only trade agreement between Mercosur and a non-South American country. Mercosur also has trade agreements in place with Bolivia, Chile and Peru, in addition to the Andean Community (Comunidad Andina de Naciones). In mid-2010 Mercosur is in FTA negotiations with Egypt, the European Union, the Gulf Co-operation Council (GCC), Jordan, Mexico, Morocco and Turkey.

 

There are differences among Mercosur members over how to negotiate with the EU. Negotiations have stalled over calls by the EU’s negotiators for lower tariffs and calls by the Mercosur negotiators for lower subsidies to EU producers. The EU was channelling its efforts through the Doha round of international trade talks, which were further complicated by a major disagreement in July 2008 between Argentina and Brazil over the reduction of subsidies in developed countries. Both blocs decided to meet again informally in June and November 2009 in Lisbon. At these meetings, they managed to come to agreement on enough issues to restart a formal negotiation, which is to take place in Buenos Aires before end-2010. At present, only 11% of European goods enter Mercosur tariff free whereas about half of Mercosur products enter Europe freely. In the upcoming talks, Mercosur wants to gain more access in the European market for is agricultural products, and the EU wants to see lower barriers to trade in the car sector.

 

Under the Mercosur agreement, a payments system in local currency was implemented in June 2007 between Argentinian and Brazilian companies. Through it, an Argentinian company can pay in pesos to a Brazilian one, which will receive Reais (the Brazilian currency) at an exchange rate that is fixed every day. This initiative is an attempt to de-dollarise regional trade operations. But by June 2010 the system has been used for only about US$1bn worth of the transactions, less than 3% of total annual trade. This may change, however, as a result of a trade dispute in May 2010 when Argentina allegedly impeded the entrance of Brazilian food imports. According to importers, Argentina is now accelerating permits for food imports from Brazil after companies said they would conduct trade in local currencies instead of US dollars.

 

The 54 bilateral investment-protection agreements administer investments between Argentina and the following countries: Algeria, Armenia, Australia, Austria, Belgium-Luxembourg, Bolivia, Bulgaria, Canada, Chile, China, Croatia, Cuba, Costa Rica, the Czech Republic, Denmark, Ecuador, Egypt, El Salvador, Finland, France, Germany, Guatemala, Hungary, India, Indonesia, Israel, Italy, Jamaica, Lithuania, Malaysia, Morocco, Mexico, the Netherlands, Nicaragua, Norway, Panama, Peru, Poland, Portugal, Romania, Russia, South Korea, Spain, Sweden, Switzerland, Thailand, Tunisia, Turkey, Ukraine, the United Kingdom, the United States, Venezuela and Vietnam, according to ProsperAr, the investment-promotion agency. Treaties with the Dominican Republic, Greece, New Zealand and Senegal were signed but not yet in force in June 2010.

 

Investment-protection treaties signed with developed countries establish a litigation court in the World Bank’s International Centre for Settlement of Investment Disputes (ICSID). The dispute-resolution processes are different in each treaty, but all have schedules for negotiations between the country and the company involved. According to the ICSID, of the 127 open cases in June 2010, 29 were disputes outstanding against Argentina. Some open cases against the country include those by El Paso Energy International Company (US), Unisys (US) and Suez Sociedad General de Aguas de Barcelona (Spain). Of the 189 cases concluded at the ICSID since 1972, 18 were cases filed against Argentina. Five were concluded in 2009: Azurix (US); Siemens (Germany), Telefonica (Spain); Citigroup (US) and Compania General de Electricidad (Chile).

 

Argentina and Chile have had mining and electricity treaties in force since 1999. For mining activity, this set up a zone (50 km wide along the 5,000-km border between the two countries) where land ownership and the movement of equipment is liberalised.

 

In May 2009, during an official visit to Argentina, Venezuela’s President Hugo Chavez and Argentina’s President Cristina Fernandez de Kirchner signed 13 co-operation agreements, three of which were linked to energy issues.

 

Ms Fernandez met with China’s President Hu Jintao in July 2010 in China, where the two leaders signed 18 bilateral economic-co-operation deals. These will channel some US$12bn in Chinese investment into infrastructure, energy and railway projects in Argentina. Among the agreements, a memorandum of co-operation was signed between Sinopec (China’s state-owned petrochemical company) and Enarsa (Argentina’s state-owned oil company); another was signed between Enarsa and Sinohydra (China’s state-owned hydro-power company). The China National Development Bank also agreed to provide Argentina’s state-owned Banco de la Nacion with a US$150m credit line. The two presidents also released a joint statement expressing their intentions to expand and diversify bilateral trade and solidify more co-operative agreements covering transport infrastructure, fishing and agriculture.

 

 


 

 

 


 

 

DESARROLLO SUSTENTABLE…

26 agosto, 2010

Fw: VECTORES DE DESARROLLO SUSTENTABLE ARGENTINO.doc

jueves, 26 de agosto de 2010, 15:27
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           VECTORES DE DESARROLLO ARGENTINO

 

Este es un trabajo del Ingº Agrónomo Fernando H. Andrade, que marca rumbos para la productividad argentina.

 

El gran desafío, es producir la cantidad de productos agrícolas para satisfacer, de manera continua y rentable, las necesidades de la creciente población.

 

Hoy estamos a las puertas de una prodigiosa innovación en la agricultura, la biotecnología. Con técnicas como la transgénesis, la mutagénesis y la selección asistida por marcadores moleculares, la biotecnología contribuye o puede contribuir a la producción agrícola en tres grandes áreas: a) la disminución del uso de agroquímicos peligrosos para el ambiente utilizando variedades que expresan  tolerancia a herbicidas, insectos o enfermedades ,  b) la mejora y diversificación de la calidad alimenticia de los productos agrícolas, y c) el aumento del potencial y estabilidad de rendimiento. Este último aporte está más relegado pues involucra mecanismos genéricos y/o fisiológicos complejos de fuerte interacción con el ambiente; no obstante, se están obteniendo incipientes y alentadores resultados.

 

Por otro lado, el conocimiento de los procesos y mecanismos determinantes  del crecimiento y del rendimiento de los cultivos contribuye al aumento sustentable de la producción, no solo por guiar al mejorador y al biotecnólogo  en lo obtención de genotipos de mayor potencial de rendimiento y adaptados al ambiente, sino además, porque nos orienta en la elección de las prácticas más apropiadas para un manejo eficiente y adecuado de los insumos y recursos. La intensificación de la producción no sólo debe ser considerada como un aumento en el uso de insumos, sino que incluye también las tecnologías de procesos y de conocimientos.

La historia nos muestra muchos ejemplos de capacidad creativa e innovadora del ser humano.  El principal motor de la innovación es la búsqueda de conocimiento, que a la vez se sustenta en la necesidad de adquirir poder y control sobre los elementos, otras especies vivientes y nuestros congéneres, buscando seguridad. Pero además, la búsqueda de conocimiento puede ser impulsada por la satisfacción  que produce el descubrimiento de algún mecanismo o proceso que explique o prediga el desenvolmiviento de la naturaleza. Cuando entendemos, aunque insuficientemente las expresiones de la realidad, algo de la grandeza que nos rodea puede llegar a impregnar nuestra mente y nuestras acciones.

 

Poseemos entonces la capacidad para responder a los grandes desafíos que hoy enfrentamos en materia de demanda de productos agrícolas. Pero debemos canalizarla a través de una sólida estructura científica tecnológica, evitando posturas ambientalistas extremas que no valoran adecuadamente dicha capacidad innovadora, tanto como posiciones tecno-centristas que no toman total conciencia de que la tecnología no es neutra sino que afecta nuestro entorno. Se necesitan demás políticas y regulaciones adecuadas, inversiones en infraestructura y sobre todo vigorosos esfuerzos por la educación y la capacitación de la población. Debemos cuidar que los beneficios de derivados de la capacidad de innovar y crear inherente a nuestra especie no sean para unos pocos por poco tiempo. Esto constituye el mayor de los desafíos que enfrentamos.-

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A LOS JÓVENES…

26 agosto, 2010
De:
“Rodolfo_Vila” <Rodolfo_Vila@arnet.com.ar>

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Para:
“AAA ninguno” <ninguno@yahoo.com.ar>

 
 
 

MENSAJE A LOS JÓVENES: como nacen las villas de emergencias.

 

El País donde yo nací se llamaba: Nación Argentina. Era en 1930. Todavía el país retenía el mensaje social de trabajo y progreso, heredados de nuestros mayores. Existía esperanza, porvenir, seguridad jurídica y social, y un concepto del respeto mutuo como ciudadanos. Estaba latente un concepto de nacionalismo popular, a partir del comienzo del siglo. El ejército había adoptado la escuela prusiana en su formación y pensamiento. Aparece con gran fuerza a principios de los años 40, como consecuencia de una manifestación contundente de su instalación a partir de la revolución encabezada por Uriburu en 1930. Hay una clara presencia del GOU (Grupo de Oficiales Unidos), entre los cuales estaba el Coronel Perón. Luego de una serie de indefiniciones, el ejército decide liberar a Perón de su prisión para evitar la presencia, en la pugna política, de grupos de izquierda radicalizados. Perón significaba lo contrario. Año 1946: este último asume la Presidencia del País. Aplica un modelo según los lineamientos del Fascismo mussoliniano, por medio del cual le daba al Estado el manejo total de las importaciones y las exportaciones a través del IAPI (Instituto Argentino de Promoción del Intercambio). La falta de producción en el campo se debía a la falta de rentabilidad, ya que el gobierno abonaba el importe de las cosechas a sus propietarios de acuerdo a la cotización internacional de sus precios, pero convertía la divisa norteamericana a la cotización oficial de $4 por dólar, cuando en esos dias, en el mercado libre exterior se cotizaba a $ 18 de la misma moneda. Como consecuencia, se abonaba la cosecha y el ganado exportable a un tercio de su valor lo que descapitalizó al campo, hizo liquidar rodeos, abandonar los sembradíos y, sobre todo, trajo aparejado un doloroso capítulo en las relaciones con la comunidad agrícola. La inflación (anteriormente casi desconocida) subió 582,3% (5,8 veces) entre 1946 y 1955 (índices: 100 a 682,3) y creó desde entonces una cultura inflacionaria que se prolongó hasta 1990 (Menem), haciendo de la Argentina la nación con mayor deterioro en su moneda, puesto que debió devaluar a los largo de esos años MIL BILLONES POR CIENTO (1.000.000.000.000.000 %), superior aún a la inflación alemana de 1922/23.

Siguiendo una matríz mussoliniana, Perón generó, en base al dinero acumulado por Argentina durante la 2da guerra mundial, un estado de bienestar aparente y transitorio, que duró solo hasta 1952. En el ínterin facilitó al prohibir importaciones de uso doméstico, como heladeras, licuadoras, etc. y promovió la instalación de industria metalúrgicas livianas, debido a que, al detenerse la producción en el campo, se generó una gran desocupación en el interior del país. Los dias 17 de Octubre de todos los años se convocaba a una gran concentración en la Plaza de Mayo, donde concurrían mayormente trabajadores. Ese día, para permitir la concurrencia masiva, el ferrocarril (medio más importante de transporte de la época) era gratis, ventaja que se prolongaba para el 18 de Octubre (San Perón), para permitir que la gente se volviera. Esto último no sucedía totalmente, mucha gente del interior sin trabajo en sus pagos, se quedaba trabajando en la industria liviana metropolitana. Dada tal convocatoria, y dada la invasión de gente que no habitaba en la zona, se creó la primer Villa de Emergencia, en la zona de Avellaneda, aledaña al Riachuelo. Perón mandó a construir un muro para evitar que la gente que transitaba, sobretodo del lado de la Capital (el camino que venía de Ezeiza era al borde del Riachuelo sobre la Capital ) viera tal lugar, Sergio Renán hizo una película que se llamó “DETRÁS DEL LARGO MURO”, donde relataba la circunstancia social que tal tipo de hacinamiento precario generaba.

Dado el fracaso de la política económica, Perón quiso girar su política hacia un modelo más liberal pero ya era tarde. Lo intentó con el petróleo en Santa Cruz, pero el Ejército (del cual nunca Perón dejó de pertenecer) se opuso a las Cesiones a Cias. Extranjeras de zonas de explotación privada. Ya era tarde, y Perón preocupado por tal fracaso repetía una cantinela después de cada discurso: “PRODUCIR, PRODUCIR Y PRODUCIR” pero ya era tarde. Había dilapidado una gran cantidad de dinero que encontró disponible, y no había generado una política de  Desarrollo de base y armónico, tal como años más tarde implementó Arturo Frondizi: con la Siderurgia , el autoabastecimiento Petrolero, la Petroquímica , la Química Pesada , el desarrollo Agrícola, etc.  

 

Ingº Rodolfo R. Vila

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¿ES COMUNISTA EL GATO?

26 agosto, 2010
Para:
Undisclosed-Recipient@yahoo.com

“TODOS SOMOS IGUALES, PERO HAY ALGUNOS QUE SON MAS IGUALES QUE OTROS” (anónimo)
——————————————————————————————————————————————————
 
Queridos amigos:
        nadie es dueño absoluto de la verdad. La verdad está en la realidad y la realidad es lo que  “es” y no siempre lo que uno “quiere que sea”.
        También es cierto que la felicidad no viene solamente de una buena situación económica. El hombre se ha vuelto tan materialista que cree que la felicidad se logra con la riqueza.
        Lo cierto es que los gobiernos pueden mitigar las necesidades básicas de los pueblos mediante políticas que les permitan crear condiciones para mejorar la salud, la educación y la seguridad. Una vez satisfechas estas necesidades básicas, los pueblos deben tener “libertad” para expresarse y buscar su propia felicidad en el amplio espectro que le ofrece la vida, sin olvidarse de “amar al prójimo como a sí mismo”.-
        Si bien suelen decir que cada pueblo tiene el gobierno que se merece, no olvidemos que todos los gobernantes salen de nuestra misma sociedad, de manera que quienes nos representan son elegidos por nosotros y llevan en si mismos nuestras mismas cualidades. (Virtudes y defectos).,-
        Un abrazo:
                     Daniel Balbastro     
 
EL UNIVERSAL

Caracas, domingo 22 de agosto, 2010

¿Es comunista el gato?
ALEJANDRO A. TAGLIAVINI |  EL UNIVERSAL
domingo 22 de agosto de 2010  10:58 AM

El “pragmatismo” de Deng Xiao Ping, para quien no importaba “si el gato es blanco o negro sino que cace ratones”, dio lugar a tres décadas de crecimiento inédito en la historia mundial, a un ritmo del 10% anual, con lo que China superó a Japón como la segunda economía del mundo. Su PIB, en el segundo trimestre de 2010, fue de US$ 1.337 billones contra los US$ 1.288 billones nipones. Y, teniendo hoy una participación de cerca del 8% en el PIB mundial, podría superar a EEUU, en 2020 según el Banco Mundial, que produce alrededor del 20% del PIB global.

Aunque las cifras podrían esconder algo de propaganda. En The Wall Street Journal comparaban el modo en que el gobierno chino calcula el PIB con las salchichas: “Si usted es fan, no pregunte cómo se hacen”. En rigor, toda la econometría, es arbitraria ya que las personas no son entes que se puedan “matematizar”. Un informe del American Enterprise Institute da cuenta de la metodología china. Por ejemplo, el mero desembolso dirigido a la inversión es considerado como si ya se hubiera realizado. Así, generando aumentos en el gasto para la producción ya registran un aumento en el PIB.

Sea como fuere, definitivamente ha crecido mucho, sacando a millones de la pobreza. Claro que esto es posible gracias a la enorme cantidad de habitantes que quintuplica la de EEUU y es casi diez veces la de Japón. De hecho, el PIB per cápita fue de US$ 3.600 en 2009, cuando el nipón llegó a 37.800.

China emplea la mitad del hierro mundial y más del 40% del acero, aluminio y carbón, produce más automóviles que EEUU y exporta más que Alemania. Posee las mayores reservas mundiales de divisas, US$ 2,4 billones, y es el primer acreedor de EEUU ya que (excluyendo Hong Kong) detentaba, en junio, US$ 843.700 millones en bonos del Tesoro, es decir 2,8% menos que en mayo, la cifra más baja desde junio de 2009. La gestión de sus colosales reservas hace temblar a Occidente.

El gigante asiático, es el segundo socio comercial de América Latina y, no solo ayuda elevando el precio de los commodities al demandar enormes cantidades, sino con inversiones. Según la Cepal, Asia recibe el 73% de las inversiones externas chinas no financieras, América Latina el 17% y África el 4%. Insólitamente, llega poco de estas inversiones debido, entre otras cosas, a la corrupción de los burócratas y la “bicicleta financiera”. Así, buena parte de las inversiones extranjeras directas del gigante asiático en la región, unos US$ 30.800 millones acumulados hasta el 2008, terminó en las Islas Caimán o en las Vírgenes Británicas.

El pragmatismo de Deng, las reformas que abrieron el país al capital extranjero y liberaron algunas actividades, produjo que uno de cada dos dólares destinados en el mundo a la inversión extranjera directa fue al gigante asiático, la mitad a través de Hong Kong.

En definitiva el tema es la coacción. Hoy, que está de moda la ecología y lo “verde”, tenemos más clara la importancia y, sobre todo, la sabiduría de la naturaleza. Y la violencia, la coacción, decía ya Aristóteles, es destructiva de la vida porque, precisamente, desvía el curso espontáneo, “natural” de las cosas. De modo que, la “autoridad” coactiva, aquella que por la fuerza policial o militar (supuestamente justa o no, supuestamente en defensa propia o no) desvía el curso de los acontecimientos, necesariamente terminará destruyendo a la naturaleza, a la vida.

La verdadera autoridad, la que construye, básicamente con el ejemplo, atrae la voluntad de las personas que, naturalmente, espontáneamente, deciden seguir ese liderazgo “moral”.

Así, en la medida en que China ha ido dejando la “autoridad” coactiva dando paso al desarrollo natural, espontáneo, de los acontecimientos, por ejemplo, cuando levantó restricciones al capital extranjero permitiendo que naturalmente se desarrollaran, en esa medida China ha crecido sin que importe “el color del gato“, llámenlo como quieran, comunista o capitalista, qué más da.

Por el contrario, cuando la autoridad es coactiva, destruye y genera violencia. En Venezuela, por caso, el Gobierno aumenta cada vez más la coacción estatal sobre el mercado, por ejemplo, ha intervenido más de 600 fincas (2.5 millones de hectáreas) y gastado más de US$ 8 mil millones en armamentos. Así, mientras en 2009 el PIB terminó bajando 2,9%, nueve millones son pobres y 3 millones pasan hambre mientras que el número de homicidios pasó de 4.500 en 1998 a 19.400 en 2009. 150.000 homicidios desde que asumió Chávez.

*Miembro del Consejo Asesor del Center on Global Prosperity, de Oakland, California
alextagliavini@gmail.com

ECONOMIC POLITICAL…

26 agosto, 2010

Sue

— On Thu, 8/26/10, F. A. “Tex” Harris <afsatex@gmail.com> wrote:

KEY OVERVIEW OF US-ARG Activities — by US State Dept Head of Public Diplomacy and Public Affairs: on Argentina: Economic and Political Perspectives

 
Judith A. McHale
Under Secretary for Public Diplomacy and Public Affairs 
Alvear Palace Hotel
Buenos Aires, Argentina
August 26, 2010

Susan Segal; Carlos de la Vega; Minister Timerman; Ambassador Negroponte; Members of the Diplomatic Corps, Legislators and Officials of the Government of Argentina; and distinguished guests:
I am delighted to be here with you today. I want to especially thank my good friend Susan Segal and Carlos de la Vega for giving me the chance to join you and for enabling me to return to Buenos Aires, which is one of my favorite cities.
I have had the great pleasure of having visited Argentina on many previous occasions, both for business and for pleasure. As President and Chief Executive Officer of Discovery Communications, I oversaw our operations here and worked closely with my media counterparts in Argentina. We launched Discovery Channel Argentina in 1996 and it very quickly became one of the anchors of our Latin American strategy. Together with our Argentine colleagues in distribution and advertising, we helped expand entertainment and information options to consumers across Argentina. Discovery Argentina fast became a profitable part of our business and, as CEO, I was particularly proud of all that we achieved. Even during the economic crisis of 2001, when many international businesses were curtailing their operations in Argentina, we worked closely with our business partners to redefine our strategies to enable us to stay here and to grow.
During those years, I also came to appreciate and value the artistic creativity and entrepreneurial spirit of the people of Argentina. Today, in my current role as Under Secretary of State for Public Diplomacy and Public Affairs, I am focused on finding new and innovative ways for the people of our two countries to work more closely together to seek solutions to the challenges which confront us, from climate change to global health, and to seize the limitless opportunities which lie ahead.
Our bilateral partnership starts, naturally, with the positive relationship that exists between our leaders and governments – but it goes far beyond that to encompass organizations and individual citizens from every walk of life. The friendship between Argentina and the United States is sustained by daily interactions between business leaders, academics and students, civil society activists, artists, writers, and journalists.
Our relationships are both deep and broad, going far beyond Washington and Buenos Aires and touching every corner of our two nations. And as I expressed to Minister Timerman yesterday, we look forward to expanding those cultural exchanges that help broaden the understanding of our shared common values.
Today, over 500 U.S. companies are active in Argentina, employing about 155,000 Argentines. Given Argentina’s vast potential in so many areas, including high tech, and biotechnology, to name two, there are many opportunities for increasing the level of foreign investment here. We want to work with you to create an environment that will facilitate the investments to develop a world-class innovation based economy.
This morning I met with an extraordinary group of young Argentine web and social media entrepreneurs. I was extremely impressed with their vision and drive and their passion for what they do. The spirit of innovation which they embody is vital to the future of Argentina and we must all work together to ensure an environment which supports their endeavors.
Argentina’s public and private sector leaders know businesses do not operate in isolation. They depend on political, economic and social structures that foster expanded commerce and successful entrepreneurship. Clearly-defined policies, consistently applied, promote sustainable economic growth, build investor confidence, and increase business activity.
Both Argentina and the United States share the belief that democracy and the rule of law provide the foundation for strong and long-term sustainable economic growth that will help alleviate poverty and allow all citizens to fully participate in the economic lives of their countries.
Business leaders in this region have told us that one of the most difficult problems facing Latin America is income inequality. As we all know this is not a problem unique to Latin America. South American countries and governments have recognized the scope of the problem and have made major strides in addressing these complex issues. They are developing sound long-term economic management policies and practices and building up stable governmental institutions to reliably enforce the rule of law. Throughout the region, democracy is taking firm hold and the rule of law is increasingly enforced.
Direct government anti-poverty programs can be valuable as well. Argentina has made important efforts to reduce the impact of income inequality on the young through the universal allowance for children and adolescents under 18 whose parents are unemployed or working in the informal sector. The program, which requires school attendance and up-to-date vaccinations and other medical care, is still in its early stages. But it has the potential to broaden the horizons of many thousands of children and distribute the benefits of increasing prosperity more equally in the next generation. The goal of improving living conditions, health and education for underprivileged children is critical to social and economic development and the broadening of opportunity.
Reducing poverty is not something governments can, or should, do by themselves. Around the world, more and more private companies are making corporate social responsibility one of their core operating principles. They find that not only is it the right thing to do, but it is the smart thing do. Increasingly, consumers come to value them not only for the products they deliver, but for the services they provide to their communities. And research has shown that as consumer loyalty increases, so does profitability.
TOMS Shoes, which won the Secretary of State’s Award for Corporate Excellence last year for its work in Corporate Social Responsibility, provides an excellent example. TOMS Shoes was founded in 2006 by Blake Mycoskie, a young American who had traveled widely throughout Argentina. During his travels, Blake witnessed first-hand the poverty which existed in many rural communities. He wanted to find a way to help, and, particularly, to help poor children.
Together with his Argentine partner, he came up with an idea that was both simple and extremely creative. Inspired by a traditional Argentine shoe, he launched a new line of alpargata shoes adapted for the US market. He coupled his new business initiative with a commitment to donate one pair of shoes to a child in need, somewhere in the world, for each pair of new shoes sold. In September of this year TOMS Shoes will donate its one millionth pair of shoes to a child in need, proving the old adage that you can indeed do well by doing good. An amazing achievement in such a short period of time!
The company is doing great things here in Argentina, and elsewhere, to demonstrate its commitment to giving something back to the societies in which it works. Our Embassy, through its annual NGO fair, brings together NGOs with companies, other embassies, and foundations to learn more about this innovative concept. The American Chamber of Commerce and some of its leading companies are now contributing the largest share of support for the NGO Fair, ensuring its sustainability.
Quality education is the motor of a modern economy. For generations, Argentina’s education system has produced top-quality high school and college graduates ready to contribute in the most sophisticated technological fields. This has been one of Argentina’s great strengths, and more than 100 years ago President Sarmiento worked with Mary Peabody Mann, widow of the famed U.S. educator Horace Mann, to bring dozens of American teachers to Argentina. This joint effort helped shape Argentina’s quality public education system.
Next year to commemorate the 200th anniversary of President Sarmiento’s birth, our Embassy is developing a plan, using technology, to expand the ties between teaching training colleges in Argentina and their counter-parts in the United States We cooperate closely with schools and universities here, and I look forward to discussing ways to expand our cooperation during my meetings with Argentine Government officials. Among other things, we want to find new ways to use technology to connect students at all levels, from elementary school to university, with their peers in both our countries so they learn more about, and from, each other and form friendships and relationships which will last a life-time.
We are also working to increase opportunities for Argentine citizens to learn English, as another tool to access economic and educational opportunities. For many years we have supported the outstanding English teaching work of our network of 16 binational centers across Argentina. Our efforts include the Access English Language Scholarship program, which gives scholarships to study English to high school students from disadvantaged communities. And in my meeting this morning with representatives of the technology community we discussed a number of innovative ways to help us expand the impact of this program.
Three hundred students from the first Access class in Argentina will finish their two-year program and graduate in December. But that’s just the beginning. The first group came from four binational centers, while the second class represents eleven centers around the country – and next year we plan to add four more locations, including Tierra del Fuego and Chaco.
Ambassador Martinez has told me how private companies and universities ensure that these hardworking graduates have further opportunities to learn and move ahead in life. One company, Manpower, is offering them training in preparing a résumé and succeeding in a job interview. Others are offering internships and part-time jobs for Access graduates pursuing university study. Additional companies are directly sponsoring Access scholarships, and I invite all of you to join with us in this important effort.
In addition to an educated workforce, modern economies also require sound banking and financial systems that provide reasonable access to capital for small and medium-sized enterprises and for long-term infrastructure projects like roads, ports, railways, and airports. No country can sustain economic growth without a robust SME sector and 21st century infrastructure. International financial institutions such as the World Bank and the Inter-American Development Bank play a crucial role, but there is no substitute for a private banking system and private investment willing to lend money for the long-term for the development of critical business and infrastructure projects.
For years, I have engaged with Argentina’s vibrant media sector. I came to know about the courage of journalists such as Jacobo Timerman and Robert Cox, who stood up at great personal peril and spoke out for human rights. I was deeply moved by Foreign Minister Timerman’s recent comments at the Department of State in Washington. He said, “The first time I walked into this building, it was actually to ask for political asylum, so I know the work that the U.S. has done in defense of human rights during the dictatorship in Argentina, and that is something that the people of Argentina and I myself will never forget and always appreciate.” And I appreciate his sentiment, for it reminds me of the responsibility we all have to support those who stand up for human rights as he did.
Not surprisingly, given my background, I believe passionately in the critical role media must play in a 21st century economy. In our two countries, there is recognition that freedom of the press and freedom of expression are fundamental human rights that are essential to democracy. Today, however, we are asked to sustain these freedoms within an ever-changing media world, in part due to new technologies. In every country of the world, citizens, businesses and governments are wrestling with the impact of these developments on free expression, politics, and individual privacy. New paths are being forged as individuals in all sectors, and at all levels of society, are provided with access to information to an unprecedented degree. And media organizations everywhere are struggling to develop new business models to ensure their continued operation.
In times like these, when we are all navigating the uncharted territory of our new media, interconnected, 24/7 world, it is especially important for businesses and governments alike to remain anchored in core principles and values. Media businesses must uphold the highest journalistic standards, and governments must demonstrate their continued commitment to the fundamental rights and responsibilities that preserve and protect our democracies.
None of us has all the answers to the questions raised in this important debate, so it is all the more important that we remain grounded in our shared values of media freedom and responsibility. The United States will continue to uphold freedom of expression and media freedom as fundamental human rights, and that freedom comes with the responsibility of maintaining media standards and ethics. That is the policy of our government and a value that continues to be shared by both of our countries.
You know as well as I do that success today – for businesses, governments, nations, and individual citizens – must be based on relationships that cross borders and oceans. We will work hard to ensure that the relationship between the United States and Argentina becomes even stronger. This is an historic partnership of great importance for both our nations, stretching back some two centuries to the early days of independence for the United States and Argentina.
As we look forward, we must strengthen our partnership and find new and creative ways to enable our citizens to work together. The United States thanks Argentina for its important contributions to peacekeeping efforts around the world, especially in Haiti. In the wake of the terrible earthquake in that country, Argentina was a vital contributor to Haiti’s rebuilding and recovery efforts. Argentina is also an active contributor to the UN mission to ensure peace and stability there.
Argentina and the United States cooperate closely in the fight against terrorism. Both our nations have been targets of attack, and that has strengthened our partnership in efforts to combat terrorism and make our world a more secure place. Our work together to bolster security and stability has helped build a framework to combat not only terrorism, but also other security threats such as narcotics trafficking and nuclear proliferation. We appreciate Argentina’s leadership when it comes to nonproliferation, and we look forward to working with Argentina, as it hosts one of the preparatory meetings for the next Nuclear Security Summit.
The United States also greatly appreciates Argentina’s active engagement on human rights issues in multilateral organizations and in our regional partnerships. There are critical challenges to democracy, human rights, and social and economic justice throughout our region and around the world. Addressing these issues is essential to the stability and prosperity of this region, and to ensuring that everyone in the Americas has the opportunity to live up to his or her potential.
The strength of our bilateral relationship is also evident in our long-standing cooperation on science, technology and health. Our space agencies have collaborated for years on building cutting-edge satellites. Together, our two countries have established a cancer research network to study the genomes of various types of cancer, and we are working together to establish a national cancer institute in Argentina.
We also recently signed a bilateral energy cooperation agreement that will focus on developing clean and renewable sources of energy. As Secretary Clinton announced earlier this month after her meeting with Foreign Minister Timerman, in a few days our two governments will hold the first Joint Committee Meeting on science and technology, where we will explore further cooperation in these areas.
This year marks the 200th anniversary of Argentina’s May Revolution. I want to conclude by joining Secretary Clinton in congratulating Argentina on its Bicentennial and recognizing the long history of positive engagement between our two countries — a relationship based not only on the work between our governments, but also on the close collaboration between our citizens. Over the last two centuries, we have worked together to better the lives of the people of our two countries, and promote peace and prosperity amongst our neighbors.
I am pleased to also add that my office recently approved additional support for our Embassy’s Bicentennial programs related to constitutionalism, federalism, immigration, and the role of minorities, and I want to reiterate the commitment of the people of the United States to make our relationship for the next 200 years one of cooperation, partnership, and friendship — we look forward to working with all of you in achieving that goal.
As President Obama stated when he articulated a new vision for America’s engagement with the world, “We seek an equal partnership… based on mutual respect and common interests and shared values….As neighbors, we have a responsibility to each other and to our citizens. And by working together, we can take important steps forward to advance prosperity and security and liberty. That is the 21st century agenda that we come together to enact. That’s the new direction that we can pursue.”
Thank you.

Argentina: Economic and Political Perspectives

 

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