Weekly Report - 11 August 2022 (WR-22-32)

ARGENTINA: Massa consolidates control

Argentina’s newly appointed ‘economy super minister’ Sergio Massa has brought the energy secretariat within his political orbit. This significantly concentrates power in Massa’s hands. It has long been controlled by Kirchnerista officials loyal to Vice President Cristina Fernández, and it has been fiercely opposed to increasing electricity and gas tariffs. One of the principal reasons why the economy minister, Martín Guzmán, tendered his resignation in early July was because President Alberto Fernández refused to grant him unfettered control over energy policy, with a view to reducing energy subsidies, for fear of crossing the vice president. The economic scenario has deteriorated since then, but it is difficult to escape the conclusion that political calculation weighed uppermost in the decision by Kirchnerismo.

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