Argentina Secretary of Domestic Trade Guillermo Moreno anticipated that the current policy implementing obstacles to contain foreign trade will continue to promote the domestic market and production, and ”because I follow the orders from the President (Cristina Fernandez)”.
In an interview with the government financed daily Tiempo Argentino, Moreno argued that the policy of substituting imports was not 'that questioned; it's only points of view published in certain media. When you talk directly to manufacturers there are no questionings, in round tables dialogue the opposite happens, they want the policy to continue.
Asked specifically about obstacles to imports and if the current policy is to continue, Moreno was crystal clear; as far as I can understand from the President's instructions, I must say yes.
Moreno who has a reputation of being a bully when not a thug in complying with Cristina Fernandez instructions, denied he was a 'hard guy' feared by the business community. Relations with the business people are good, and I have done my duty.
The minister who on occasions has called business people early morning to invite them for a meeting at his office, where he received them with a gun on his desk, again denied inflation and criticized the estimates from private consultants, which are more than double the official stats office Indec results.
How much is the kilo of beef? Beef hasn't gone up in three years in a country which consumers mainly meats. What are we talking about? The price of beef, the price of chicken haven't gone up underlined Moreno.
The domestic commerce minister finally argued that most consumer goods, mainly food are not sold in supermarkets, where price hikes are more evident.
Less that 30% of products are sold in supermarkets. I'm talking about the main supermarket chains, supermarkets in the rest of the country and the Chinese self service outlets. I repeat: three out of ten products are sold in supermarkets. You are trying to convince me that they set the path of prices? Yes they do, but grocers sell cheaper than supermarkets and I'm pleased with that”.