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LatinNews Regional Monitor: Brazil & Southern Cone - 11 February 2019

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In brief: Argentina

* Argentina’s energy ministry has confirmed that the first public pricing auction for natural gas will take place on 14-15 February in the Buenos Aires chamber of commerce (BCBA), using the electronic gas market trading platform, Megsa. Following a public consultation that took place in January, Energy Secretary Gustavo Lopetegui signed a resolution outlining the conditions for this public auction between producing and distribution companies, which will determine the wholesale price of natural gas. The aim of this unprecedented form of public auction is to increase competition and drive down user prices. Lopetegui’s predecessor Javier Iguacel, who resigned in December 2018, estimated that the price of gas could increase by 35% from April this year.