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Montevideo, May 27th 2024 - 00:55 UTC

 

 

Milei reverses shopping trends in less than 4 months in office

Monday, April 8th 2024 - 10:22 UTC
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No question about it: Argentina has become expensive in US dollars No question about it: Argentina has become expensive in US dollars

Argentine President Javier Milei has been in office for less than 4 months, more than enough time to turn things around for people in neighboring countries. Uruguayans who used to do their shopping across the border no longer find it profitable, while Argentines flocked to Chile over the Easter weekend to do theirs.

According to Uruguayan analysts, the price difference between their town of Salto and Concordia, in the Argentine province of Entre Ríos, fell from 183% in September 2023 to 50% last month, which is expected to have a positive impact on Uruguayan retailers. Although Salto remains more expensive, the fuel price differential reached 190% seven months ago and is now 30%, it was explained.

In addition to rampant inflation in Argentine pesos, Argentina also has inflation in US dollars, making prices less affordable for foreign shoppers. As the Chilean peso has fallen against the US dollar, Argentine consumers looking for electronics, shoes, and clothing items are more prone to crossing the Andes.

For example, a Playstation 5 console can be found in Chile for the equivalent of AR$ 778,557, while in Argentina it would sell for as much as AR$ 1,499,999. An 83-inch TV that sells for AR$ 3 million (US$ 3,000) in Mendoza costs US$ 900 in Chile.

Argentine shoppers have to pay an import tax on purchases over US$ 300. Nevertheless, some 20,000 Argentines crossed the Andes for the Easter weekend.

Milei supporters and opponents agree on one thing: Argentina is expensive in US dollars.

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