Archivo de Autor


10 diciembre, 2015












11. ARGENTINA: COUNTRY OUTLOOK (Economist Intelligence Unit – ViewsWire)






17. IS THE DRUG WAR COMING TO ARGENTINA? (Foreign Policy in Focus)



20. ARGENTINA’S ROAD TO RECOVERY (American Enterprise Institute)



By Jonathan Gilbert
Dec. 6, 2015

BUENOS AIRES — In her last days in office, she has appointed ambassadors and signed decrees that will drain federal coffers. Her political appointees refuse to resign. She has even antagonized her successor with stinging remarks at public appearances.

After eight years as president, Cristina Fernández de Kirchner clears out her office at the presidential palace on Thursday. But far from preparing the ground for Mauricio Macri, the president-elect, she is obstructing the transition in a final show of muscle, observers say.

“It is by no means a smooth transition,” said Dante Caputo, a former foreign minister. “And it’s not a transition that protects the well-being of the nation. Rather, Mrs. Kirchner seems irritated about having to hand over power, and she’s expressing it by taking decisions that jeopardize Argentina’s delicate economic situation.”

Mr. Macri, the scion of a wealthy family from outside the political establishment, upended Argentine politics last month by defeating the candidate of Mrs. Kirchner’s leftist party, which has governed for 12 years and was expected to win another four-year term. Mrs. Kirchner was barred by term limits from seeking re-election this year, but she could run again in 2019.

Her resistance is also widely viewed as a maneuver to build an image as an unyielding opposition leader, especially as she prepares for a power struggle within her political movement.

Mrs. Kirchner’s supporters have long considered Mr. Macri, 56, the center-right Buenos Aires mayor, too close to corporate interests. And as he prepares to roll back her interventionist economic policies with market-oriented changes favored by business leaders, Mrs. Kirchner is refusing to fade into the background and, analysts say, is spraying grit into the machinery of his plans.

“A country is not the same as a business,” she said in a recent speech at a hospital in Buenos Aires in which she reminded Mr. Macri of his small margin of victory, fewer than 700,000 votes in a nation of 43 million. “Nobody should be confused about that.” (N.B. Rumour hath it that fraud was involved in the presidential election, and there are stories of aggressions by Kirchner supporters. The initial difference between Macri and Scioli was 6%, not 2%, but as the evening transpired there was a sudden surge for Scioli in votes counted . . . after Scioli had already conceded a 6% victory to Macri earlier. A previous fraudulent electoral vote for governor in the Province of Tucumán that gave the election to the Kirchner candidate — an election now declared null and void — shows what can be done at the voting tables using paper votes. One of the projects of the Macri government is to change the voting system to electronic votes, a process advocated earlier for the presidential elections, but roundly rejected by the FPV.)

Mrs. Kirchner, 62, has also sought to stymie Mr. Macri — already burdened by the largest budget deficit in three decades and critically low Central Bank reserves — by signing a decree broadening a recent court order so that certain funds controlled by the federal government will devolve to all of Argentina’s provinces, not just the few the ruling had applied to. Days later, there was news of another decree that will constrain Mr. Macri, freezing debt owed by the provinces to the federal government.

Even though these moves could eventually be overruled, they were malicious, said Federico Thomsen, an independent economist here. “She would never have done it at the start of her own four-year term,” he said. “It’s a way of showing: ‘We’re leaving in a fighting mood.’ ”

Mrs. Kirchner’s press office did not return calls and emails seeking comment. Aníbal Fernández, her cabinet chief, conceded to reporters that the decree broadening the court order would endanger the payment of state pensions, but said Mrs. Kirchner was simply adhering to her interpretation of the judges’ decision.

As Mr. Macri seeks to reposition Argentina on the world stage — appointing Susana Malcorra, a former United Nations official, as his foreign minister, and distancing the country from socialist Venezuela, Mrs. Kirchner has been making ambassadorial appointments to Cuba, the United Arab Emirates and Australia. Although Mr. Macri can replace those ambassadors, foreign policy experts have criticized her timing.

Her political appointees at public institutions like the Central Bank have also refused to step aside. Mr. Macri, who needs to control monetary policy to carry out his changes, has chosen a lawmaker from his party to lead the bank. But Alejandro Vanoli, a Kirchner appointee whose term ends in 2019, has stood firm. (N.B. Vanoli resigned after the publication of this Update and received the new Central Bank president elect to discuss the economic situation of the Bank..)

“It seems clear to me that the president does not want to collaborate,” Mr. Macri told reporters last week. “It feels like she’s fueling this idea of: ‘How many new obstacles and problems can I create for the next government?’ ” There have been voices of dissent even from within Mrs. Kirchner’s political movement.

Mr. Macri could maneuver around congressional checks and balances to remove Mr. Vanoli and other political appointees by decree. But that could jeopardize one of his key campaign promises: to decentralize the government by diluting the power of the presidency.

“It’s complicated for Macri because he won with a commitment to Republican principles,” said Mariana Llanos, an Argentine research fellow at the GIGA Institute of Latin American Studies in Hamburg, Germany. “To remain credible he has to be careful.”

When Mrs. Kirchner and Mr. Macri agreed to meet at the presidential residence here soon after his Nov. 22 victory, many Argentines hoped for a tidy transition. But Mr. Macri said the meeting had been largely pointless because Mrs. Kirchner refused to discuss subjects apart from his inauguration ceremony. Mrs. Kirchner’s press office did not respond to a request for comment on the meeting.

“Cristina Kirchner’s call to Macri seemed to point to an orderly transition,” said Cintia Maldonado, an analyst at Cippec, an Argentine public policy research center. “But then it didn’t pan out as we would have liked.”

Still, Ms. Maldonado said meetings thereafter between departing and arriving cabinet ministers have suggested a thaw in the tensions. After Axel Kicillof, Mrs. Kirchner’s outspoken economy minister, met his successor, Alfonso Prat-Gay, the incoming minister posted news of the “productive” session on Twitter.

Political transitions have often been rocky in Argentina, said María E. Coutinho, a scholar who specializes in the country’s presidential system, partly because there are no established protocols for transitions, like those in the United States and neighboring Brazil. So a smooth transition depends on the good will of the parties involved. “Transitions after a long political cycle are complicated,” Ms. Coutinho said, adding that the unease between Mrs. Kirchner and Mr. Macri recalled the difficult presidential transition of 1999, after 10 years of rule by Carlos Saúl Menem.

Arguments have even broken out about the ceremony details, friction that points to Mrs. Kirchner’s ambitions beyond the end of her presidential term, according to analysts. “She’s playing to the last minute, reluctantly relinquishing power and showing signs that she doesn’t want to disappear from the political arena,” Ms. Llanos said.

Mrs. Kirchner posted a barrage of messages on her Twitter feed on Sunday evening, claiming that Mr. Macri had disrespected her in a phone call about the ceremony, and accusing him of playing politics by seeking to fuel perceptions that she was complicating the transition.

Still, supporters of Mrs. Kirchner played down the tension, with some pointing to Argentina’s turbulent recent history, in which two presidents have relinquished power earlier than scheduled because of crises.

“After eight years in office, she is handing over the presidency in due time and form,” said Cecilia de Cortázar, 29, a math professor. “She has made a lot of Argentines believe in politics again and I reckon that she actually deserves their affection and applause.”

By Peter Prengaman
December 4, 2015

BUENOS AIRES, Argentina — A growing spat between Argentina’s outgoing president and president elect over inauguration day logistics took a strange turn on Friday, with the silversmith responsible for crafting a ceremonial baton saying an assistant was threatened by possible police action.

The brouhaha, which has many Argentines shaking their heads, deepened on the same day that President-elect Mauricio Macri visited neighboring Brazil, his first head-of-state visit since being elected Nov. 22.

Macri wants to receive the presidential baton and sash from outgoing President Cristina Fernandez in the government house, or Casa Rosada, during the Dec. 10 inauguration. However, Fernandez administration officials insist the transfer will happen in Congress.

News channels, which covered the disagreement all day, briefly broke in to show Macri meeting with Brazilian President Dilma Rousseff. Macri was asked by reporters in Brasilia about the tiff. He responded that thankfully Rousseff didn’t bring it up, but otherwise didn’t comment.

“Many of us look at this and think, ‘How embarrassing,’” said Martin Bohmer, former dean of the law school at the University of Buenos Aires. “It’s amazing that we are having so much trouble transferring power.”

The very active social media sites in the South American nation went wild on Friday after silversmith Juan Carlos Pallarols shared his story with several news organizations. The respected craftsman has made every presidential baton since the country’s return to democracy in 1983.

He said Macri officials this week asked him not to turn the baton over to the current administration. But the other side also applied pressure: Pallarols said an assistant received a threatening call from a Fernandez official, saying police would intervene if the baton wasn’t finished and turned over soon.

“It was an unpleasant situation,” said Pallarols, who added that another official later called him to apologize.

On Twitter, a clip from popular cartoon produced by a state television channel was making the rounds. In one episode, “Zamba,” the protagonist, is visiting the Casa Rosada. A guide tells him it’s “where the presidential sash and baton are handed over.”

The constitution establishes that the incoming president’s swearing in ceremony take place in Congress, but does not specify where things like batons or sashes should be handed over.

While Fernandez received the baton and sash in Congress, other new presidents have received them at the Casa Rosada.

“The president is within her rights,” said Cabinet chief Anibal Fernandez. “The articles will be in Congress. If Macri doesn’t want to receive them there, then he shouldn’t receive them.”

Fernandez, a populist leader who publicly criticizes her opponents, has dominated the political landscape the last 12 years: initially as first lady during the administration of late husband Nestor Kirchner, and the last eight as president herself.

News columnists and social media pundits have speculated that Macri will refuse to bow to Fernandez, and will simply put on his own presidential sash or ask a top official in his administration to do it.

Ignacio Fidanza, director of popular political website, said Fernandez was being “whimsical.”

“She is in a state of shock after 12 years in power and doesn’t understand that she’ll no longer be president,” said Fidanza.

By Jose Enrique Arrioja
December 6, 2015

Argentina’s president Cristina Fernandez de Kirchner complained today about the behavior of her successor President-elect Mauricio Macri while discussing details of the swearing ceremony scheduled to take place on Thursday.

” I have to confess that I was surprised by the exulted– euphemism for yelling– verbiage of the president-elect,” Fernandez said referring to a telephone conversation she held yesterday with Macri to discuss the transfer of power at Casa Rosada, as the nation’s presidential palace is known. She issued the comments in an article published in her website, which main quotes were also tweeted in her account. (N:B: There has been some comment that the accusations of Fernandez that Macri had raised his voice to her (“I reminded him that I am a woman and he is a man,” and shouted her down over the telephone, insisting on following the procedures for the transition ceremony he advocated, seem rather nebulous, since the conversation, had it occurred as Mrs. Kirchner claims, could easily have been recorded at the time and played back to support Mrs. Kirchner’s claims of Mr. Macri’s disrespect.)

Fernandez and Macri are at odds by the protocol of the swearing ceremony. While Fernandez wants the Congress to relay the Presidential band, Macri seeks to have the transition at the presidential palace. The ceremony is an “institutional act” therefore “should take place at the Congress,” Fernandez said in the article.

Fernandez vowed to break the silence about her discrepancies with Macri. “I’ll not tolerate in silence, as until now, the personal and public mistreatment” displayed by Macri since winning the presidential election, Fernandez wrote.

President-elect Macri, who takes office Dec. 10, pledged during the campaign to remove import restrictions and currency controls and let the peso float freely on his first day in office. He won the November 22 elections with 51.4 percent of the vote against 48.6 percent for the ruling party’s Daniel Scioli, ending 12 years of leftist ruling led by the late Nestor Kirchner and Cristina Fernandez de Kirchner.

In responding to Fernandez’ comments Argentina’s vice president-elect Gabriela Michetti defended Macri by saying in her Twitter account that he “is not disrespectful to anyone.” Michetti reiterated the incoming administration’s plans of having the transition ceremony at the Congress to then head to the presidential palace to receive the presidential band from Fernandez. “If the incumbent president rejects this, it will be members of the Supreme Court who will perform the hand over,” she added.

By Carolina Millan
December 7, 2015

* Trust issuance grew 52% in October from year earlier
* Trusts help companies `build a reputation,’ AdCap says

Argentine companies looking to take advantage of a surge in optimism toward the country are increasingly using investment trusts to raise funds and gain investors’ confidence before an overseas bond sale, according to AdCap Securities, a Miami-based broker and investment bank.

South America’s second-largest economy has been in the spotlight for international investors over the past weeks as Mauricio Macri campaigned for president on a pro-business platform and won. Hedge-fund managers from George Soros to Richard Perry and companies including Brazilian foodmaker BRF SA and U.S. oilseed processor Bunge Ltd. have increased investments in the country on a wager that Macri will implement economic reforms such as letting the currency trade freely and settling a decade-old dispute with holdout creditors that imperiled the country’s access to overseas markets.

For Argentina’s small- and medium-sized companies looking to get a head start in tapping capital markets, trusts are poised to grow as the instrument of choice, Daniel Canel, the chief executive officer at AdCap Securities, said in an interview in Buenos Aires. The monthly average amount issued in trusts in the country grew 52 percent in October from the previous year according to a report by Argentina’s securities regulator, the CNV.

“For many years, Argentina companies haven’t issued debt, so there are companies that need to build a reputation before they issue abroad,” said Agustin Honig, the head of sales and trading at AdCap, which underwrites the trust securities. “Until international flows come to Argentina, there’s much need for local financial engineering that can guarantee the first steps of project financing. Trusts allow companies to start raising capital and become known in the market.”

Investment trusts will continue to grow as companies, particularly those in the infrastructure and agriculture sectors, raise money for new projects, Canel added. Since they’re tied to specific assets, investors have more confidence in the likelihood of getting paid back and interest rates are as much as 3 percentage points less than companies would get from bonds, according to Gonzalo Vallejos, the head of capital markets at AdCap.

By Jose Enrique Arrioja
December 6, 2015

Argentina may create a single exchange-rate regime as soon as next week after the new government takes power, incoming Finance Minister Alfonso Prat-Gay said, according to newspaper La Nacion.

The decision will take place Dec. 14 unless certain conditions aren’t yet satisfactory, Prat-Gay told a group of local reporters in Buenos Aires, La Nacion reported on its website Sunday.

“If we can do it on the 14th, we’ll do it on the 14th, and if not, then when conditions are adequate,” Prat-Gay said, according to La Nacion. “We are going to fulfill this promise as soon as possible and as clearly as possible,” he said.

In order to lift foreign-exchange controls, the incoming government wants to see new management at the central bank, Prat-Gay said, because the government’s goals differ from the decisions implemented by current policy makers. “The unification of the exchange market will be the first signal for the economy to start normalizing,” he added.

President-elect Mauricio Macri, who takes office Dec. 10, pledged during the campaign to remove import restrictions and currency controls and let the peso float freely on his first day in office.

Investment banks such as Morgan Stanley favor an immediate correction in the exchange-rate regime. In a report to investors last week, the bank said that “although many Argentina watchers are calling for deferment of the exchange-rate correction, we think that a one-off, early adjustment is the preferred option.”

Argentina’s international reserves fell $24 million on Dec. 4 to $25 billion, the central bank reported. Argentina is currently in default on about $28 billion of foreign-currency bonds after U.S. District Judge Thomas Griesa blocked the country from making payments on the debt until it settles with a group of hedge funds including Paul Singer’s Elliott Management and Aurelius Capital Management.

Argentina’s official exchange rate closed at 9.7275 per dollar on Friday, compared with the implied exchange rate, known as the blue-chip swap, at 15.32.

By Daniel Cancel
December 4, 2015

* Eduardo Eurnekian may take several units public in 2016
*Corp. America interested in joint bid for Petrobras assets

Argentine billionaire Eduardo Eurnekian said he’s looking to increase investments in his Brazilian businesses and may also pursue wind energy assets in the country on a bet that Latin America’s largest economy is poised for recovery.

Eurnekian, the founder and chairman of the Corp. America holding company that includes assets in airports, energy, construction, technology and agriculture, says the political and economic crises in Brazil will come to an end and that protectionist policies in the region are fading with the incoming government of Mauricio Macri in Argentina.

“The positive part about what’s happening in Brazil is that it’s getting resolved,” Eurnekian said in an interview at his office in Buenos Aires on his 83rd birthday while sipping mate, the region’s traditional herbal tea. “We believe strongly in regional cooperation and we’re still very open to increasing our investments in Brazil.”

Corp. America operates airports in Brasilia and Natal in Brazil and holds a 33 percent stake in Unitec, a microchip maker, that it acquired from former Brazilian billionaire Eike Batista. The Buenos Aires-based holding company is working with a bank to possibly take several units public in New York next year which would include the technology, airports and energy businesses, said Eurnekian, who is the son of Armenian immigrants.

“Next year we should be listing two to three companies in the U.S.,” Eurnekian said. “It will depend on a few things but I can guarantee that we’ll be ready when the moment comes.”

Brazilian President Dilma Rousseff is fending off impeachment proceedings while a judicial investigation into graft has ensnared companies including state-run energy producer Petroleo Brasileiro SA and Banco BTG Pactual SA. The economy is heading for its longest recession since the Great Depression, its currency has tumbled almost 30 percent this year, and the stock market is poised for a third straight year of losses.

Petrobras has been trying to sell its Argentine unit this year. While Eurnekian’s Cia General de Combustibles SA already purchased gas fields from Petrobras, he is interested in acquiring more of the assets in a joint bid with other partners, he said. Argentine state-run energy company YPF SA had also put in a bid for the unit.

“We need to wait for the willingness from Petrobras to sell,” he said. “Their situation is complex, they’re sellers but have to resolve a political issue first. I do think they will be leaving the country.”

Rousseff met with Macri on Friday in Brasilia where they discussed regional trade, a possible European Union pact with the Mercosur trade bloc and elections in Venezuela. Macri takes office Dec. 10 and has tapped a former JPMorgan Chase & Co. banker and central bank president as finance minister to fix an underperforming economy and manage the end of currency controls.

In Argentina, there will be a “rush of investment” once Macri generates confidence, he said. For now, bond yields continue to be too high for corporate borrowers which is keeping his units from tapping international capital markets, he said.

“A good dose of confidence should be Macri’s first measure,” he said.

By Dimitra DeFotis
8 December 2015

Argentina’s newly-elected president, Mauricio Macri, takes the reins Thursday, and economic reform that should attract foreign investment is at the top of the to-do list.

Macri’s central banker is likely to move gradually to lift capital controls propping up the peso to attract investors in order to conserve dwindled foreign reserves, writes Alberto Gallo head of global macro credit research at RBS. Argentina’s capital controls include limits on dollar savings and imports. At issue: the incoming government wants new central bank management.

Stocks rallied in anticipation of change, and now they are doing the opposite. The Global X MSCIArgentina exchange-traded fund ( ARGT) has stumbled more than 9% over the past month, while the iShares MSCI Brazil Capped ETF ( EWZ) tumbled 6% and the iShares MSCI Emerging Markets ETF ( EEM) fell 7%. Among individual stocks, MercadoLibre ( MELI) has been a standout, with a flat performance, while YPF ( YPF) is down 23% in the past month, Nortel Inversora ( NTL) is down 17% and BBVA Banco Frances ( BFR) is off 15%.

In the immediate, here is what Gallo sees as dominant on the 2016 Argentina reform agenda:

Devaluing the Peso. Moving to a single exchange rate could happen as early as next week, the incoming finance minister has said. “A newly-appointed central bank governor is likely to pursue successive devaluations, as government debt to GDP could rise by 15 percentage points to around 60% after the currency devaluation (U.S. dollar/Argentine peso from 9.7 to around 15). A devaluation of the peso to the dollar may be unavoidable as emerging market currencies will likely come under pressure from a stronger dollar. In addition, the government needs to finance the country’s fiscal deficit with dwindling foreign reserves (around 4% of GDP vs fiscal deficit of -2.6% in 2015; IMF).

Rapidly easing export controls. Lifting export controls is key to stemming a steady decline in exports since 2011 and to counter weaker demand from trading partners including Brazil which consumes 21% of Argentina’s exports, according to Bloomberg data. Macri has pledged to reduce export taxes rapidly …

Resuming negotiations with international creditors. Argentina has been locked out of international credit markets following a U.S. court ruling that Argentina cannot pay its restructured debt (agreed by 93% of bondholders) until it repays the 7% of bondholders that rejected the restructuring terms.” Macri said a deal with holdout creditors could come in 2016, Reuters reports.

Gallo notes that incumbent central bank Gov. Alejandro Vanoli, who is expected to resign, is under investigation for the bank’s role in selling below-par currency swaps that would lose money in a peso devaluation. A reform-government replacement would be more likely to remove rules that restrict banking sector growth. A silver lining here: “Argentina’s banks have had weak profits, but they also didn’t take part in the emerging market credit binge,” Gallo writes.

8 December 2015

BUENOS AIRES, Dec 8 (Reuters) – Argentina’s incoming secretary of finance met in the United States on Monday with the arbitrator of the South American country’s marathon court battle with creditors over defaulted bonds, a spokeswoman for incoming Economy Minister Alfonso Prat Gay said on Tuesday.

The meeting was between future finance official Luis Caputo Debt and mediator Daniel Pollack, who has been assigned by a U.S. federal judge to help reach a settlement between Argentina and creditors who rejected the terms of the country’s 2005 and 2010 sovereign bond restructuring.

“It was a good meeting,” the spokeswoman said, calling it “an introductory session.”

President elect Mauricio Macri has made settling the multi-year dispute a high priority.

Argentina needs to end the case if it is to open much needed access to international capital markets. Macri was elected last month and is scheduled to be sworn in as president on Thursday.

Macri on Wednesday expressed confidence that a deal could be reached with so-called “holdout” creditors. Asked if it was possible in 2016, Macri said, “Yes, of course.”

Macri, the business friendly mayor of Buenos Aires, won the Nov. 22 presidential runoff election promising to open the country s stagnating economy to investors by dismantling protectionist controls imposed by outgoing President Cristina Fernandez.

Macri will inherit a fragile economy that could benefit from the kind of financing that comes from issuing global bonds.

Anemic growth is underpinned by unsustainable public spending, and inflation is estimated at about 25 percent. Also, the peso currency is over-valued and the central bank is running precariously low on U.S. dollars.

6 December 2015

BUENOS AIRES, Dec 6 (Reuters) – The government of Argentina’s president-elect Mauricio Macri said Sunday that it will seek to dismantle a series of capital controls propping up the peso as soon as possible, aiming for December 14 if the central bank is under new management.

Macri has previously demured on giving details on his strategy to lift outgoing president Cristina Fernandez’ so-called “clamp-down” on dollar purchases that has created a multi-tiered exchange rate, saying he must first take a close look at the true state of national accounts.

But incoming finance minister Alfonso Prat-Gay said in an interview with three local dailies that doing so was a top priority to tackle soon after the transfer of power Dec. 10, despite the possibility of a sharp devaluation.

“The program to unify the currency market is the first signal for the economy to start to normalize. We’re going to fulfill that promise as fast and as exhaustively as possible,” Prat-Gay was quoted saying in newspapers La Nacion, Perfil and Clarin.

“If we can do it the 14th, we’ll do it the 14th, and if not, we’ll do it once we see the right conditions,” he said.

Prat-Gay said currency reform could probably only begin once a new central bank chief assumes power and it is clear there will be a sufficient supply of dollars. He added that he hopes to make an announcement soon on a new source of hard currency that will help the bank restore its dwindling reserves.

Current capital controls include strict limits on dollar savings, restrictions on imports and a hefty tax on credit card use abroad.

Prat-Gay did not specify whether the government would seek to undo the controls all at once or bit-by-bit. He could not be reached for comment Sunday.

Prat-Gay was global head of foreign-exchange research at JP Morgan in the late 1990s before leading Argentina’s central bank between 2002 and 2004. Macri picked him to help him end more than a decade of free-spending populism that has hobbled growth and stoked inflation in Latin America’s third largest economy.

Central bank president Alejandro Vanoli is expected to resign in coming days, under pressure from Macri to make way for a currency devaluation to spur exports and halt the drain on central bank reserves used to prop up the peso.

Macri plans to appoint former Buenos Aires city bank chief Federico Sturzenegger to head the bank.

By Martin Langfield
December 7, 2015

The author is a Reuters Breakingviews columnist. The opinions expressed are his own.

New pro-business leaders in both Venezuela and Argentina face a conundrum. Unsustainable social spending by the leftist opponents they have just defeated has helped crater the economy in both countries. Addressing that without sparking unrest or wrecking their own credibility will be no mean feat.

Any reform will be a battle in Venezuela, where the Democratic Unity coalition won at least 99 of the National Assembly’s 167 seats on Sunday. Socialist President Nicolas Maduro, whose term in office expires in 2019, may try to use other institutions he controls to stymie any legislative initiatives. That could prompt lawmakers to pursue a recall vote to oust him next year. Perhaps mindful of not alienating voters ahead of that, opposition leader Jesus Torrealba says the coalition will not dismantle highly popular welfare programs, even as it pushes to reform the central bank and roll back nationalizations.

Venezuela’s economy, though, is expected to shrink 10 percent this year, according to the IMF. Its triple-digit inflation is the world’s highest and oil revenue, which accounts for virtually all hard-currency income, has fallen drastically since last year. Pushing for spending cuts may prove unpopular, but failing to do so risks sharing the blame for the economy’s continued dreadful state.

Argentina’s incoming President Mauricio Macri will have more power than the winners of Venezuela’s election when he takes office on Dec. 10. But he faces a similar calculus. The fiscal deficit is ballooning, inflation is in double digits and reserves are dwindling. Macri plans to undo capital controls that have propped up the peso and seek a deal with U.S. creditors suing Argentina over unpaid debt. If his plans work, some of leftist predecessor Cristina Fernandez’s social programs may still prove affordable. If they do not, cutting them could spark unrest.

Populist leftism may be on the retreat in Latin America – even Cuba may soon reach a Paris Club debt settlement and is pragmatically improving U.S. relations. But it’s not going quietly. Maduro and Fernandez are likely to fight tooth and nail to defend social gains. How Venezuela and Argentina fare will be a useful primer when Brazilian voters head to the polls in 2018 to pick leftist President Dilma Rousseff’s successor – assuming she survives impeachment efforts in the meantime.

11. ARGENTINA: COUNTRY OUTLOOK (Economist Intelligence Unit – ViewsWire)
4 December 2015

POLITICAL STABILITY: The election of Mauricio Macri in the second-round presidential run-off on November 22nd heralds a period of substantial policy adjustment as the new administration, which takes office on December 10th, works to reduce the risk of economic crisis and to return the economy to sustainable growth. Reflecting the scale of economic mismanagement under the current government, led by Cristina Fernández de Kirchner, which has produced stagflation and strong currency devaluation pressures, the adjustment process will be a difficult one, involving politically unpopular austerity measures, including a scaling-back of fiscal expenditure. Resistance among Argentina’s powerful unions to austerity, and, in particular, to efforts to rein in nominal wages in bargaining rounds next year, will be strong, and The Economist Intelligence Unit therefore believes that the risk of social unrest will remain high in 2016.

ELECTION WATCH: A series of elections in 2015 has left Mr Macri’s Pro in charge not just of the presidency, but also of the capital city, Buenos Aires, and provincial governments, which together account for almost half of the population. However, the Pro is in a minority position in both houses of Congress and will not have another chance to reverse this position until mid-term legislative elections in October 2017. The Pro will hope that macroeconomic adjust will by then have set the economy on a solid footing, leaving it well placed for the mid-term elections. However, in the meantime, the president-elect will face the challenge of keeping his coalition partners, including the UCR and the smaller centre-left Coalición Cívica on side, while building bridges with the Peronist party. Although the Peronist party was defeated in the recent presidential election, combined, the two main wings of the party have a majority in both houses of Congress; they also control 12 of Argentina’s 24 provincial governments, which are powerful political forces in their own right. Developments in the Peronist party leadership as it adjusts to the loss of the presidency will therefore be a key consideration. As it loses the powers of patronage bestowed on it by the presidency, we believe that the leftist-populist Frente para la Victoria (FV) faction of the Peronist party will lose influence, and that the position of the traditional Peronist wing will improve, most probably under the leadership of Sergio Massa, who came third in the presidential poll. In this scenario a working relationship between Congress and the president could develop. However, in the short term, the FV will obstruct Mr Macri’s reform agenda to the extent to which it is able.

INTERNATIONAL RELATIONS: We assume that the Macri administration will move to repair relations with trade and investment partners that have been damaged by trade protectionism, nationalisation, failure to abide by rulings of the World Bank’s International Centre for Settlement of Investment Disputes (ICSID) and failure to exit default. Relations with the US remain at a low ebb following sovereign default in 2014, which was the consequence of Argentina’s defiance in the face of a New York court ruling. We assume that Mr Macri will work from 2016 to exit default (by arriving at a deal with holdout creditors) and normalise relations with creditor countries, suggesting improved relations with the US, Europe, and with partners in the Mercado Común del Sur (Mercosur, the Southern Cone customs union) in the outlook period. However, at the same time, China will remain a strategic partner. This position was cemented under the Fernández administration by a series of investment accords, and by a US$11bn, three-year currency-swap arrangement agreed in mid-2014 that has bolstered the foreign reserves and given the government a lifeline as it seeks to avoid a currency crisis. Mr Macri seems likely to pursue an extension of this agreement to provide much-needed financing during a period of difficult economic policy adjustment.

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9 diciembre, 2015














Demostrare que el Proyecto del doctor Duhalde para que el Congreso destruya la MONEDA NACIONAL es una aberración jurídica, porque esta violando el espíritu de la Constitución Nacional. Y por lo tanto, es un proyecto DESASTROSO que deber rechazado por nuestros Legisladores, para evitar cometer un error gravísimo que implicaría hacernos retroceder culturalmente “milenios” porque nos dejaría sin moneda, es decir, volveríamos al salvajismo.


    Porque es FALSO que la Constitución haya autorizado al Congreso a IMPONERNOS EL VALOR DE LA MONEDA en el sentido que lo pretenden nuestros…

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Era K; muertes por represión estatal

9 diciembre, 2015


9 diciembre, 2015


La cultura argentina tiene “referentes” importantes, y los apellidos Maradona, Menem y Messi han estado en el Podio largo tiempo, y con razón. Incluso dos siguen

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Lousteau re moneda argentina inflacionaria

9 diciembre, 2015


8 diciembre, 2015

Aunque hoy ya no exista, el viejo juicio de residencia español a un Administrador (ciudadano Presidente de Argentina, por ejemplo) sería conveniente cada vez que se produce un cambio de Presidente en Argentina. Estos sucesores de Fernando VII hoy elegidos por el voto popular, debieran constitucionalmente ser meros Administradores de la Nación, pero suelen creerse Amos y su mandato, son intocables por la justicia, porque subsiste el temor reverencial. Y cuando se prolonga demasiado el plazo de su poder (Cristina Kirchner senadora, diputada y esposa del Presidente Nestor Kirchner desde 2003 a 2007, y Presidenta entre 2003 y 2007, pero como enviudó en 2010, y fue re electa hasta 2015, durante doce años se acostumbró a ser LA PRESIDENTA de 40 millones de argentinos) suelen equivocarse. Pasado mañana a las O horas dejará el cargo.
Sin Juicio de Residencia vigente en la ley argentina, su sucesor el Administrador Presidente Macri puede inspirarse en los antiguos juicios de residencia hispanos para controlarla e impedir que si se hubiera enriquecido en forma ilícita, su deslealtad hacia el Pueblo Argentino sea investigada usando leyes vigentes, para que riqueza mal habida vuelva al Estado en vez de quedar en poder de bandidos Presidentes, Gobernadores, Intendentes, Ministros, familiares y asociados.
la figura del enriquecimiento ilícito permite – porque está en el Código Penal – suplir la ausencia del juicio de residencia español. Bastaría con que tres o mas personas se unan con el propósito de enriquecerse, o porque están unidas, se enriquecen en forma ilegítima.
En la práctica, los Presidentes designan a tres o mas personas de su conocimiento para Administrar al país, y suelen elegir a los mas íntimos para la misión. No es difícil saber de donde vienen las conexiones, pero los nuevos Presidentes necesitan de amigos confiables. Se sabe hoy quienes son amigos de Macri, y quienes fueron amigos de Nestor y Cristina, y quienes fueron designados para sus gobiernos, y quienes se enriquecieron con los Kirchners. Y en poco tiempo sabremos si amigos de Macri se enriquecieron durante los ocho años de Jefatura de Gobierno de la Ciudad de Buenos Aires.
No parece imprescindible dictar la Ley del arrepentido, que usan en Nueva York para atrapar ladrones de la FIFA. Sin ser penalista, intuyo que con la figura de asociación ilícita basta y sobra para incautarse de los bienes de los Presidentes y familiares y asociados en Argentina.
Sabemos que es tarea de los jueces interpretar la ley, pero cuando se trata de funcionarios arrepentidos, son ellos quienes deben probar su inocencia, la carga de la prueba de invierte, al acusado corresponde demostrar que su riqueza fue bien habida, el acusador solo tiene que probar que enriquecimiento extra ordinario existió.
Sergio Massa propuso algo parecido, especialmente contra corruptos o narcotraficantes, por ser gente peligrosa no solo por lo que roba sino por lo que deseduca a los argentinos. Y Macri prometió igual. Falta ver como funcionan en la realidad.


8 diciembre, 2015

Algo nos ocultan Cristina y Macri en torno a la disputa innecesaria en torno al bastón y banda presidencial, que de nada sirven a un Presidente serio, y que deberían ser abolidos para siempre en una república democrática como queremos hacer creer al mundo Argentina hoy lo es. Este tema lo tratamos años ha, cliquear y hoy creemos que el único que se beneficia es Pallarols, que supo promocionarse al cobrar solo un peso, y publicitarse en todo el mundo, en forma hábil y honesta, y su fama sigue creciendo.
El problema de fondo entre Cristina y Macri es demasiado grave para ocultarlo: si Argentina ha sido robada y se la sigue robando al día de hoy gracias a gastos extravagantes, negocios turbios, contratos con el Estado donde se paga el doble o triple porque la mitad se dice va para la Corona, o las obras se licitan, se pagan pero no se construyen, lo ponen al aún Presidente electo Macri en una situación incómoda frente a la Presidenta saliente. Porque la ley obliga al Presidente, como a cualquier funcionario publico, a denunciar penalmente los delitos de los que toma conocimiento en el ejercicio de su cargo. Y Macri ha sido funcionario publico desde hace mínimo ocho años Jefe del Gobierno de la Ciudad Autónoma y se enteró de muchas cosas sucias del modelo K que no denunció, pero que debió haberlo hecho mucho antes. Y que tendrá que denunciar en un par de días, cuando asuma la Presidencia, y si no lo hace, que desde este blog le demandaremos.
Es comprensible que una persona bien educada como Macri tenga reparos en decirle verdades a Cristina que ella prefiere no oír, e incluso que como Intendente de la Ciudad no lo haya hecho para no perjudicarnos a los vecinos porteños de las iras k. Debido a las numerosas graves sospechas de que el Estado Nacional durante el kirchnerismo ha empobrecido al país y enriquecido a los Presidentes y amigos, las cosas cambian a partir de terminar el día 9 de diciembre de 2015, porque Macri se aseguró judicialmente que Cristina al comenzar el día siguiente ha perdido su poder, sus fueros y la imposibilidad de ser llevada a juicio por sospecha grave de enormes delitos patrimoniales contra las finanzas del país, cometidas durante el gobierno que termina mañana, pero que se prolongarán posiblemente durante la Administración Macri, ya que Cristina firmó demasiados nombramientos de personas innecesarias para el gobierno de Macri, pues la finalidad parece ser ayudar a amigos consiguiendo salarios innecesarios que serán pagados por un Estado Argentino que no los necesita. Ya el gobierno entrante dijo que los nombramientos necesarios – muy pocos – serán respetados y los demás serán cancelados, pero igualmente demasiado dinero publico será perdido incluso con Macri debido a la grosería de nombrar tantos funcionarios y personal innecesario, para ayudar a los amigos K a costillas del patrimonio nacional. En ese sentido, a juzgar por la gente del gobierno entrante, Argentina ha sido saqueada y exprimida y no existe dinero para pagar deudas contraídas por los gobiernos provinciales, y la propia gobernadora Vidal de la Provincia de Buenos Aires se dice tuvo que pedir ayuda a Macri porque el gobernador Scioli dejó empobrecida a la Provincia mas grande y poblada del país.


Poco sentido tiene hacerse el simpático el Presidente con una ex presidenta de la que dicen es mala y ha dañado a Argentina en forma grave, pero lo niega. Se puede ser amigo de politicos opositores o parecer enemigo, si existe la obligación legal de denunciar Macri todo el daño que Cristina patrimonialmente causó. Sería injusto que ella no respondiese con su enorme fortuna personal y la de sus hijos heredada de Nestor, porque las causas no se investigaron lo suficiente o se cerraron en forma indebida por temor de funcionarios judiciales a las iras de la Presidenta, de quien se dice se creyó la dueña de Argentina.
Poco serio sería Macri si no impulsa como Presidente la investigación del patrimonio de la familia Presidencial y sus asociados sospechosos. Ergo, siendo serio, Macri no podía negociar ni transar con la Presidenta, y no lo hizo. Ahora, debe denunciarla para que se investigue si ella se enriqueció y si nos empobreció intencionalmente, un delito feo calificable de asociación ilícita.
Peor aún: sabiendo los abusos que ella cometió en sus años de desgobierno, mal hizo Macri en ofrecerle el avión Presidencial para viajar un día mas tarde a Santa Cruz a la jura de Alicia Kirchner como Gobernadora de Santa Cruz. Por varias razones, comenzando porque todavía la Corte Suprema Nacional no decidió aún si es legal su designación, porque la ley de lemas que le permitió ser Gobernadora es realmente constitucional. Además, Cristina es millonaria, y tiene amigos poderosos que pueden prestarle sus aviones veloces para acudir a la asunción de la gobernadora de Santa Cruz. O pudo la Gobernadora mandarle un avión provincial para que su cuñada la visite, ahora que ella tiene mas poder que Cristina si todavía existen los famosos millones de la Provincia de Santa Cruz que cuando Gobernador, Nestor Kirchner expatrió cuando le anticiparon antes de deponer al Presidente Fernando de la Rua que habría pesificación.

Reservas del Banco Central ¿qué son?

8 diciembre, 2015

Los economistas parecen olviar quelas Reservas del Banco Central fueron cosas cosas distintas incorparables, en las últimas décadas, y vemos que esto confunde a la opinión pública, a algunos economistas y quizás al Presidente electo Macri. Veamos.
El cambio se produjo durante la Presidencia de Carlos Menem. Para frenar la hiperinflación, debió usar un mecanismo políticamente aceptable, consistente en tener dinero argentino que no se depreciara jamás frente al dolar, algo que parecía imposible. Pero Menem contrato a Steve Hanke y Kurt Schuler, y éstos le diseñaron un plan sencillo, que era casi perfecto, solo que olviaron avisarle al Gobierno Argentino que el Banco Central debía poner un tope a la tasa de interés activa y pasiva del sistema financiero argentino. O lo avisaron y el menemismo no lo entendió, el ministro Cavallo tampoco, y esto me impulsó a comentarlo y fue publicado en La Nueva Provincia
Las reservas del Banco Central durante la convertibilidad NO ERA DINERO DEL ESTADO ARGENTINO NI TAMPOCO CAPITAL DE DICHO BANCO.
Cada uno de las decenas de miles de dolares que fueron las reservas del Banco Central durante la Convertibilidad eran propiedad exclusiva de los tenedores de los pesos convertibles intercambiables uno a uno con el dolar, para permitir que dentro de Argentina circulase dinero argentino, que valiese exactamente igual que los billetes norteamericanos dolar, que emite y protege el sistema de la Reserva Federal de USA.
Recordemos: el Banco central de Argentina no podía emitir pesos convertibles a dolar sin recibir previamente exactamente igual cantidad de dolares, era como que solo con dólares reales pudiesen comprarse pesos argentinos convertibles. Aunque hoy parezca una locura, el sistema funcionaba porque el Presidente Menem era confiable ante el mundo y durante mucho tiempo el modelo de la convertibilidad funcionó maravillosamente. En casi 6 meses la inflación (devaluación del peso frente al dólar) terminó, y los argentinos nos acostumbramos a preferir recibir pesos en vez de dolares, en la tranquilidad de que serían dentro del territorio nacional aceptados sin vacilar, porque quien los tenía podía cambiarlos sin costo alguno por su equivalente en d+olares, en la ventanilla del Banco Nación y sucursales o del Banco Provincia de buenos Aires.
Tanto éxito tuvo la Convertibilidad, que quien creímos la inventó, el doctor Domingo F. Cavallo, se ufanaba diciendo que Argentina tenía “reservas por decenas de millones de dólares”, algo falso, porque esos dolares no eran de propiedad del Estado Argentino, sino de los confiados tenedores de pesos convertibles.


Las “reservas” reales de los países normales suelen ser cantidades significativas de dinero que proviene de impuestos que anticipadamente ha sido cobrado a los habitantes para con su producido producir un “colchón” o fondo para prevenir gastos futuros, y estar seguros que el Estado podrá siempre con sus obligaciones. Así era Argentina hasta que la inflación permanente nos empobreció o limitó nuestro crecimiento, desde 1930 incluso hasta hoy exceptuando los diez años y medio donde la convertibilidad funcionó, la mayor parte con Menem Presidente, y dos años apenas con Fernando de la Rúa, que fue expulsado de la Presidencia para reemplazarlo por un peronista devaluador inflacionista. Para confirmarlo, noten que al interino Presidente Adolfo Rodríguez Saa apenas dijo a la Asamblea Legislativa que cuidaría el valor de la moneda ( el peso convertible) la mayoría de los congresistas decidieron reemplazarlo por otro Presidente inflacionario autoritario, y lo lograron muy rápido: apenas duró una semana en su cargo hasta que huyó a su Provincia de San Luis donde se sentía protegido, y renunció telefónicamente al cargo de Presidente de Argentina. Y los congresistas cambiaron la ley de acefalía para dejar sin efecto las elecciones a Presidente y Vice que habían sido convocadas para fines de marzo de 2002, e inventaron que cuando habían desaparecido el presidente y su vice presidente transcurrida la mitad de los cuatro años de mandato, era la Asamblea Legislativa la que nombraba al interino para cumplir el plazo faltante. Por eso, faltando CASI dos años, lo nombraron a Eduardo Duhalde, de la rama peronista inflacionaria, quien apenas electo Presidente provisional para completar los cuatro años de Fernando de la Rúa, decidió y con apoyo de Alfonsín el hiperinflacionario, logró que la Asamblea en la siniestra noche de fin del año 2001 derogara la ley de convertibilidad que nos había traído estabilidad monetaria frente al dolar durante diez años y medio. Se confirma que los peronistas y algunos radicales son inflacionistas, porque así se enriquecen y enriquecen a sus amigos. Imaginamos Macri a esta altura lo sabe, pero no estamos seguro y tememos lo engañen y fracase. Porque la inflación delata a un Presidente ladrón, y la hiperinflación, a uno hiper ladrón. Recordemos que en el gabinete de Macri hay algunas personas posiblemente honestas, pero muchos trabajaron durante gobiernos ladrones e inflacionarios, no hace falta hacer los nombres, porque son muchos, y en general lo sabemos.


Si no mienten Macri y su equipo, el Banco Central está fundido. Pero eso sucedía antes, incluso con Duhalde, Nestor y Cristina Kirchner, y Argentina siguió funcionando. Digamos que no teníamos reservas verdaderas de propiedad del banco central desde hace varias décadas, durante Menem y de la Rúa las reservas no eran del Estado sino de los tenedores de los pesos convertibles, y antes de la convertibilidad, las reservas no existían porque Alfonsín no las recaudó y los militares las habían dilapidado con la Guerra de Malvinas y los anteriores robos de Videla y Martinez de Hoz, que terminaron con inflaciones altas, al igual que lso desgobiernos de Perón e Isabel Perón.
¿Porque todavía no fue denunciada penalmente Cristina por la supuesta asociación ilícita consistente en designar miles de empleados y funcionarios innecesarios a escasos días de terminar su gobierno? Supongo porqué Macri está mal asesorado, sus futuros ministros ¿son incapaces o cristinistas? Ojo, igual sucedió con el derrumbe del edificio calle Bartolomé Mitre al 1300 en el 2011, que motivó la ley 4004 de la Ciudad autónoma que autorizaba a expropiar por causa de utilidad publica el edificio derrumbado y pagarlo al precio de plaza del día anterior al derrumbe.¿fue delito y asociación ilícita entre Mauricio y los diputados que aprobaron la ley? Macri dice ser honesto, queremos creerle, pero no arregló el tema del derrumbe, en el lugar hay un terreno baldío y alrededor de cinco millones fueron pagados por un edificio derrumbado, señal de que algo raro hubo.
Pero en Argentina faltan decenas de miles de millones de dolares, y nadie se tomó el trabajo de intimar a la Presidenta a rendir cuentas y avisarle que a posteriori Macri haría algo muy parecido a los antiguos juicios de residencia: llamaría a una auditoria seria, tipo Price Waterhouse (la auditoria general de la nación es inútil y lenta, sus burócratas no atrapan delincuentes, y se quejan de la justicia).
CONCLUSIÓN: Macri es demasiado lento a los efectos de impedir que durante los últimos días de su desgobierno, Cristina siga vaciando las arcas del Banco Central y del Estado (al designar funcionarios y empleados innecesarios, y dictarse leyes por parte del Congreso insensatas e inútiles.
Al Presidente se le suele decir el primer mandatario. Pero como Mandatario del Pueblo, Macri debió haber intimado a la Presidenta Cristina a no desvalijar al Estado en sus últimos momentos, como aparentemente sucedió. Y por no haberlo hecho, la primer medida como Presidente es exigir rendición de cuentas documentada y denunciar penalmente a la Presidenta y sus ministros por posibles delitos, tipo asociación ilícita y empobrecimiento o administración fraudulenta, porque parece delictivo designar empleados y funcionarios en cantidades innecesarias y al final de la Administración K. La intención de beneficiar a funcionarios y empleados a costillas del Gobierno de Macri es tentativa de defraudar a los argentinos, le guste o no a Macri. Pero aún no reaccionó, y debemos advertirle que proceda, para que la tragedia no se siga repitiendo.


8 diciembre, 2015


Germán Berizzo, inquieto lector y activo ciudadano, envió desde San Carlos de Bariloche, Río Negro, una carta abierta al senador nacional Aníbal Fernández (Buenos Aires-Frente para la Victoria):
Aníbal Fernández.

Querido Aníbal: Luego del 8N vos dijiste no comprender el sentido de la marcha. También dijiste que la gente copiaba encabezados mediáticos y no era capaz de desarrollar la idea subsecuente.

Bueno, como no tengo derecho a creer que tus expresiones estuvieron basadas en el cinismo o en la genuflexión, me inclino a creer que lo tuyo es simple ignorancia. Claro, tanto compartir espacio con tanta gente vulgar te ha quitado la chispa de la perspicacia.

Por eso yo quiero ayudarte a comprender el mensaje de cada cartelito. Lo que sigue es largo, por lo que te pido que te armes de paciencia y buena voluntad. Vas a aprender mucho de lo que sigue y espero que luego de leer…

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D. Cavallo: ¿por qué me condenan?

7 diciembre, 2015

o Cavallo
Domingo Cavallo
Para Hoy a las 12:03 P.M.
Domingo Cavallo
¿Por qué me condenan?
Posted: 06 Dec 2015 07:46 PM PST
Al ex Presidente Carlos Saúl Menem lo condenan por utilizar fondos reservados de la Presidencia para pagar complementos remuneratorios a los funcionarios de su administración. A mí, aparentemente, me condenan por haber cobrado esos complementos entre 1991 y 1993, cosa que hicieron todos los Ministros, Secretarios y subsecretarios y también todos los legisladores nacionales. Eso, a pesar de que yo fui quien en 1991 instruyó a todos los ministros en reunión de Gabinete Nacional a incluir los complementos salariales en las respectivas declaraciones juradas de impuestos, y quien en 1994, conjuntamente con el Ministro Armando Caro Figueroa, convenció el Presidente para que firmara el decreto 838/94 que eliminó el carácter secreto de esos complementos. La decisión judicial no es solo injusta sino simplemente absurda.
Aún no han dado los fundamentos, pero por lo que leyó el Presidente del Tribunal en oportunidad de dar a conocer la sentencia, el 1 de diciembre, yo habría sido partícipe necesario, igual que el ex Ministro de Justicia Raúl Granillo Ocampo, del delito de Peculado (sustracción de fondos públicos por parte de aquel al que le fuera confiada su administración) del que habría sido autor el ex Presidente Menem durante su mandato.
Como además de la condena de prisión, disponen la confiscación de 220.868 pesos, cifra que surge de mis declaraciones de impuestos de los años 1991 a 1993, mi delito habría sido el cobro durante los 34 meses de esos tres años, de 6.500 pesos por mes, procedente de gastos reservados de la Presidencia de la Nación.
En el caso de Granillo Ocampo, quien nunca mencionó haber cobrado sobresueldos en sus declaraciones de impuestos de los años 1991 a 1993, le confiscan 1.350.000 pesos que, según quienes lo acusaron, habría recibido de gastos Reservados de la Presidencia durante los años 1998 y 1999. La cifra revela que en caso de ser cierta la acusación, lo que Granillo Ocampo habría recibido no puede ser considerado complemento salarial. Es muy difícil encontrar la conexión entre el delito del que se me acusa a mi con aquel por el que se lo acusa a Granillo Ocampo, salvo que lo que fue una acusación de pago ilegítimo de sobresueldos se haya transformado en una acusación genérica de pagos ilegítimos con fondos reservados. Si este fuera el caso, no se entiende cómo pueden haber llegado a una conclusión sin haber indagado, por ejemplo, al Secretario de la SIDE y a los demás Ministros que manejaron gastos reservados.
En mi caso, es bien sabido que hay alrededor de 40 funcionarios, entre ex Ministros, ex Secretarios, ex Subsecretarios y algunos asesores, que también declararon ante la Dirección General Impositiva, haber cobrado durante los años 1991 a 1993, cifras parecidas a las que me condenan a devolver. Y es también bien sabido, porque ha estado en la prensa desde el ano 1993 en adelante, que todos los ex Ministros, ex Secretarios y ex Subsecretarios, así como todos los demás funcionarios públicos de jerarquía equivalente que estuvieron en funciones entre 1991 y 1993, y los diputados nacionales cobraron complementos salariales procedentes de gastos reservados, aún cuando no aparezca la expresión “Ley Secreta 18302” en sus declaraciones de impuestos.
Yo dediqué varias horas, durante el juicio, a explicar en indagatoria, lo que ocurrió en materia de pagos de complementos salariales con Gastos Reservados de la Presidencia hasta que por iniciativa mía y del ex Ministro Armando Caro Figueroa, el Presidente de la Nación dictó el decreto 838/94 por el que se dispuso que se siguieran pagando los mismos complementos con partidas no reservadas de cada Ministerio.
Por lo que surge de lo hasta ahora conocido de la sentencia, como no me reclaman la devolución de los 201.500 pesos (6.500 durante 31 meses de 1994 a julio de 1996) que declaré como procedentes del decreto 838/94, el Tribunal considera que lo dispuesto por ese decreto no fue un acto delictivo. Quienes estén interesados en mi explicación, he incorporado a este blog el texto y el video de mi declaración indagatoria del 15 de marzo de 2015 y también el video de la sesión en la que respondí las preguntas de los fiscales, de la querella y del Tribunal.
El pago de complementos salariales con gastos reservados de la Presidencia fue una práctica que viene de muy lejos. Se explica porque en las épocas de alta inflación, cuando los aumentos salariales que se disponían eran por sumas fijas, se achataron las escalas salariales del sector público y los sucesivos Presidentes prefirieron pagar complementos con partidas reservadas en lugar de ajustar las escalas de manera explícita. Sin duda, se trataba de una de las tantas prácticas presupuestarias defectuosas y no transparentes que existieron hasta la sanción de la ley de Administración Financiera que mi Ministerio propuso y logró aprobar en 1992. Pero fue precisamente mi labor como Ministro de Economía y la de Armando Caro Figueroa como Ministro de Trabajo que terminó definitivamente con esta práctica. En mi caso, lo hice apoyando el decreto de 1991 que elevó a 6 mil pesos la remuneración explícita de los Directores Nacionales que cumplían funciones ejecutivas y que, en un número aproximado de 500, venían recibiendo también, hasta ese momento, complementos salariales procedentes de gastos reservados. En 1992, apenas Menem me dio la atribución necesaria, dispuse aumentar hasta 7 mil pesos la remuneración total de los miembros de directorios de empresas, bancos oficiales y organismos descentralizados, terminando, para alrededor de otros 400 funcionarios, la práctica de que cobraran complementos salariales por gastos reservados. Y en 1994, cuando Armando Caro Figueroa me acompañó en mi empeño por sancionar el decreto 838/94, terminamos con el sistema al disponer que los alrededor de 200 funcionarios que seguían cobrando complementos salariales con gastos reservados, dejaran de recibirlos por esa vía y lo hicieran desde partidas transparentes del presupuesto de cada jurisdicción.
Fui yo quien en 1991 instruyó a todos los ministros en reunión de Gabinete Nacional a incluir los complementos salariales en las respectivas declaraciones juradas de impuestos según una fórmula que incluía la mención de la Ley Secreta 18302, tal como me lo recomendó el entonces Secretario de Ingresos Públicos, Dr Carlos Tachi, quien había consultado al Procurador del Tesoro, al Secretario Legal y Técnico de la Presidencia y al Asesor Letrado de la Secretaria de Informaciones del Estado. Por esta razón, muchos funcionarios declararon los complementos salariales utilizando la fórmula sugerida por el Dr. Tachi. El resto, muy probablemente también los declaró, pero sin mencionar a la mencionada ley. Es asombroso que en la etapa de instrucción se haya procesado precisamente a los funcionarios que declararon haber recibido esos complementos salariales, aún cuando el entonces jefe de la Oficina de Anti-corrupción, también había sido Subsecretario en el Ministerio del Interior y cobrado esos complementos en los años 1991 a 1993.
Es la primera vez en la que quien corrige una práctica presupuestaria defectuosa y lucha por la transparencia, prestándose sin restricciones a los requerimientos del Congreso Nacional y de los periodistas, es condenado por un supuesto delito de corrupción. ¿Donde está el dolo de mi actuación? Si yo hubiera estado cometiendo un delito ¿piensan los señores jueces que soy tan estúpido como para luchar por que se conociera lo que estaba ocurriendo?.
Sobre este tema he respondido a muchos requerimientos periodísticos y escrito varios posts. Para quienes tengan tiempo y paciencia los invito a releer las notas tituladas “No se investiga la verdadera corrupción” y “Me demonizaron los medios de comunicación” y los posts “La corrupción que no se investiga” y “Siembran confusión para cosechar impunidad“. Espero que la presunción de que los Tribunales Orales y de la Cámara de Casación Penal que hice en el post “Mi procesamiento en la causa de los sobresueldos” termine siendo correcta. Al menos uno de los jueces del tribunal Oral votó en disidencia y la condena no es definitiva y puede ser revisada por la Casación, a la que apelaremos apenas sean dados los fundamentos de la sentencia.
Todos los esfuerzos que me demandaron desde 1995 las persecuciones de los fiscales y jueces de instrucción fueron y siguen siendo un agobio muy grande. Me duele mucho el daño que le causan a mi familia, pero yo los soporto y seguiré soportando mientras tenga fuerza y razón porque la lucha por la verdad y la justicia han acompañado siempre mi empeño en trabajar por el bienestar de los Argentinos. Habré cometido muchos errores, pero nunca delinquí. Si no lo reconoce así la justicia terrenal, confío en que si lo hará la Justicia Divina.
Agradezco a través de este post las expresiones de solidaridad, pero debo reconocer que estoy sorprendido por las escasas muestras de apoyo que recibí. Obviamente, muchos de quienes fueron mis colegas y saben cuál es la verdad prefieren mantenerse en el anonimato y no arriesgar a escribir un e-mail, enviar un mensaje de texto o hacer una llamada a mis teléfonos.
Mas importante aún, me preocupa el mensaje que la Justicia envía a las personas honestas que deseen ingresar a un gobierno futuro e intenten bregar por la transparencia y la honestidad en las finanzas publicas. Los que dicen la verdad y declaran sus ingresos, son condenados. Los que mienten y ocultan su patrimonio, aun de la forma mas burda e hipócrita, gozan de impunidad.

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