Argentina: The newly elected President Javier Milei proposes large-scale reforms

The newly elected President of Argentina, Javier Gerardo Milei, is proposing large-scale reforms that will take 35 years to implement.

The newly elected President of Argentina, Javier Gerardo Milei, is proposing large-scale reforms that will take 35 years to implement. These include cutting government spending, abolishing the central bank and privatizing railways, airlines and oil companies, informs “La Nacion”.

After the victory of Javier Milei in the 2023 elections, many began to wonder what the political program and proposals of the elected president are. The document containing the main ideological provisions was duly submitted by the ‘La Libertad Avanza’ party to the Electoral Chamber as a prerequisite for the approval of the liberal economist’s candidacy for the presidency.

The first paragraph defines liberalism, which he often repeats in his interviews and public appearances: “Liberalism is unlimited respect for the lives of others, based on the principle of non-aggression and the protection of the rights to life, liberty and private property. Its fundamental institutions are markets, free from government interference, free competition, division of labor and social cooperation.”

After a thorough analysis of the current situation, ‘La Libertad Avanza’ proposes a comprehensive reform “in three successive stages” that will take 35 years to fully implement.

The first phase of the plan “involves deep cuts in government spending and tax reform aimed at lower taxes, labor flexibility to create private sector jobs, and unilateral opening to international trade.” The process of tax cuts and liberalization will be accompanied by “financial reform that promotes the creation of free and control-free banking and free competition in the foreign exchange sector.”

As for what could happen immediately after the government led by Javier Milei comes to power, the document clarifies some aspects of economic policy.

Firstly, it is “elimination of ineffective government spending” and “optimization and staff reduction.” Miley promised that if he came to power, he would reduce government spending by 15% of GDP, as well as the number of ministries. His program contains some ideas with which the government intends to get rid of the overabundance of civil servants. “Offer voluntary retirement, early retirement, revision of labor and service contracts for low-performing employees.”

Economic reforms are dominated by the concept of “privatization of unprofitable state-owned enterprises.” Among the government agencies that Javier Milei promised to cut, close or privatize if he came to power are Conicet (National Council for Scientific and Technical Research), Incaa (National Institute of Cinema and Audiovisual Arts), Ferrocarriles Argentinos (Argentine Railways), Aerolíneas Argentinas (Argentine Airlines) and YPF (an acronym for Yacimientos Petrolíferos Fiscales, literally “public oil fields”).

Paragraph 14 of the official document, in the section on agriculture and fisheries, provides for “providing special treatment to the maritime and even river sectors through a system of concessions and even privatizations.”

In the “Security” section there follows a proposal for “the construction of correctional institutions (police stations and prisons) based on a public-private management system.” It also plans to “explore the feasibility of lowering the age of criminal responsibility,” which is currently 16, and “promote the restructuring of the national defense, homeland security, and national intelligence systems into a single macro-system called the National Security System.”

The platform also clearly states ‘La Libertad Avanza’’s stance on firearms ownership, which they advocate for freedom in paragraph 17 of the “Security” section: “With respect to firearms ownership, we propose to protect the lawful and responsible use of firearms by citizens.”

In the part on labor reforms, the first priority is the idea of “promoting a new law on employment contracts without retroactive effect. The main reform here will be the abolition of compensation without cause and replacing it with an unemployment insurance system to avoid litigation,” as well as “reducing taxes for employers to work.”

In keeping with the program’s recurring message of eliminating or cutting taxes, on the labor front he promises “lower taxes for workers” that would also apply to their employers. In general, it is “the partial abolition and reduction of taxes to promote the development of productive processes carried out by private business and to stimulate the export of goods and services.”

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