Argentina will hold its presidential runoff election today
The front runner, Economy Minister Sergio Massa is facing his far-right competitor Javier Milei. With inflation higher than 130% and 40% of the population living below the poverty line, economic issues are at the core of the race. During the campaign, Massa defended his inflation policies, which include price and currency controls. His policy proposals consist of penalties for tax evasion, an anti-money laundering law, a reduction in the value-added tax, and a national digital currency. Milei’s more radical program would replace the Argentine peso with the US dollar, abolish the country’s central bank, and reduce the number of state ministries.
If Massa was elected, it is hard to say whether Argentina’s economic policy would vary much, since Massa was the former Economy Minister. Still, his policy has been able to keep the cost of utilities and transport low. The former Minister also warned the population of the risk of even greater inflation under Milei. Moreover, a group of economists criticized Milei’s policies in an open letter, claiming his election would cause even more economic “devastation”. His reductions in government spending would worsen the country’s poverty and inequality levels and could cause social conflict.
Anita is an analyst that writes for the Daily Brief.