Argentina: To the winner, the spoilt economy
This year’s presidential election in Argentina is likely to be the first to be decided in a second and final round of voting since the constitution was changed in the 1990s. The outcome for the country – and its economy – will be as important as it will likely be close. Euromoney talks to economic advisers to the two leading candidates about how they view 2016 and beyond.
Argentina is on the brink: on the brink of a presidential election; on the brink of a hugely important choice; and quite possibly on the brink of economic and financial chaos – whoever wins.
The August primaries – effectively a large national opinion poll for the two leading candidates – showed how successful short-term economic policy has been in creating breathing space for the ‘stability’ candidate, Daniel Scioli. He won the primaries, with 38.4%, 8.3 percentage points ahead of the combined votes for the opposition Cambiemos candidates, of which Mauricio Macri becomes the official candidate in the first round of the presidential election in October.
The main candidates
Daniel Scioli has twice been elected as governor of the state of Buenos Aires – Argentina’s most populous state and the key to national elections. Through tax increases he has kept the state’s finances in decent shape (according to BNP Paribas) and won the primary elections in August. He has the support of the current president, Cristina Fernandez de Kirchner, and although he is normally seen as more moderate than Kirchner – he has a background in working for his family’s company – his choice of Carlos Zannini as running mate (Kirchner’s current legal secretary) has created some concerns as to his independence and ability and desire to moderate current policies.