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Montevideo, February 21st 2019 - 12:45 UTC

Argentina considering phasing out Patagonian ports' fisheries exports

Monday, July 25th 2016 - 10:51 UTC
Full article 3 comments
“I imagine that in the next thirty days we will have some announcement on the issue, it will be a gradual phasing out”, said Metz. “I imagine that in the next thirty days we will have some announcement on the issue, it will be a gradual phasing out”, said Metz.
Benefits according to the 2015 bill it awards 13% and 11% reimbursements for exports produced and shipped from Ushuaia and Rio Grande respectively Benefits according to the 2015 bill it awards 13% and 11% reimbursements for exports produced and shipped from Ushuaia and Rio Grande respectively
“If the incentives for Patagonia ports are eliminated it will have a mortal impact on fish processing plants” underlined Das Neves. “If the incentives for Patagonia ports are eliminated it will have a mortal impact on fish processing plants” underlined Das Neves.

The Argentine government is considering phasing out the incentives which benefit Patagonian ports fisheries exports. The announcement was made by Jorge Metz, Ports Under Secretary during a recent visit to Bahía Blanca although pointing out the issue was still under consideration by the cabinet chief office, but some advances would be made public in a month's time.

 “I imagine that in the next thirty days we will have some announcement on the issue, it will be a gradual phasing out of incentives and this responds to the fact that it erodes competitiveness for the north of Colorado river ports”, said Metz.

Benefits according to the 2015 decree approved by the previous Argentine government and which was to last five years, awarded 13% and 11% reimbursements for exports produced and shipped from Ushuaia and Rio Grande respectively, both in Tierra del Fuego.

“The solution is not simple because it implies a benefit for some, and a root elimination is not intelligent”, admits Metz.

Patagonian provinces agriculture and fisheries ministers are scheduled to meet in the province of Chubut to address the issue which will also have an impact on the depleted provincial finances.

In effect Chubut governor Mario Das Neves anticipated he was point blank against the announcement and anticipated that “there's strong pressure from the big ports of Mar del Plata and Bahía Blanca, but we also have our people, our lawmakers, our governors, our record on the incentives, because we have arguments to counter the initiative”.

“If the incentives for Patagonia ports are eliminated it will have a mortal impact on fish processing plants” underlined Das Neves.

The original incentive for Patagonian ports goes back to 1983, and has been extended following political negotiations between the Executive and Legislative several times although always with the promise that after so many years the benefit would begin to be reduced one percentage point per year.

It seems the Patagonian provinces are facing another chapter of this ongoing dispute, augmented by the fact that the province of Buenos Aires is crucial for president Mauricio Macri's political plans to ensure his hold over Argentina's most decisive electoral jurisdiction in next year's midterm elections.

Macri's coalition rules the Buenos Aires province, but as happens at federal level needs of a circumstantial alliance with small parties and disenchanted Kirchnerites to have legislation approved.

Categories: Economy, Fisheries, Argentina.

Top Comments

Disclaimer & comment rules
  • Bisley

    There is no reason why government should be financially propping up fisheries, or any other industry, at the public's expense. It's up to the people involved to find a way to make their business profitable, or do something else. It's better to work for less, than not work at all.

    Jul 25th, 2016 - 03:10 pm 0
  • Marti Llazo

    “...no reason why government should be financially propping up fisheries...”

    To understand the why, one must understand peronism, which has no interest in allowing private industry to be independently profitable and takes sometimes Draconian measures to prevent such outcomes. Peronismo is founded on the notion that it is the obligation of employers to keep useless and unproductive people on the rolls and to provide lavish benefits, irrespective of how unprofitable an enterprise may result, and that when private industry cannot absorb all of the country's dead wood, then it is the obligation of government to tax the productive sector in favour of providing comfortable salaries for the noncontributors, the inefficient, and the politically supportive. This allows the nonproductive members of society to be counted as part of the much-touted but largely artificial middle class in this country.

    Véase 'redistribucionismo,' reekie.

    Jul 25th, 2016 - 04:55 pm 0
  • Pugol-H

    So fish processing plants, fish exports subsidised through the ports, where is the fish landed in the first place?

    If it is being landed there, does it really make sense to process it there then drive/rail/fly? it to a port further north for export.

    Or even move the processing plant north and move raw fish about?

    If the fish is landed there (I have no idea about that), then aren’t they being paid for what would or should happen anyway?

    Just a thought.

    Jul 25th, 2016 - 06:10 pm 0
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