The tour that President Alberto Fernández made through France and Indonesia left as the main balance in favor China’s authorization for Argentina to dispose of 5,000 million dollars as part of the Swap mechanism for any type of commercial use and the support of the managing director of the IMF, Kristalina Georgieva, on the economic direction and fiscal discipline of the country.
Fernandez kept a bilateral meeting with his Chinese counterpart, Xi Jinping, in Bali, Indonesia, where both leaders participated in the 17th G-20 Leaders Summit.
Xi authorized the Chinese government for Argentina to freely dispose of 25,000 million yuan, which is equivalent to 5,000 million dollars.
What was striking was that Xi told Fernández that this measure is an absolute exception that China makes for Argentina, an issue on which the Government had been working for months and finally received a favorable response last Tuesday.
These funds will go to the reserves of the Central Bank for the strengthening of the currency and increases the capacity for action in the single free exchange market, in addition to having one more tool to guarantee the exports of small and medium-sized companies that sometimes cannot access dollars.
The other point they discussed was the Argentine claim for a debt of 276 million dollars that keeps China for the “Kirchner” and “Cepernic” dams“. China admitted the rarrears in payments and gave instructions to the Development Council to cover that debt.
At present, the country maintains with China a negative trade balance of about 8,000 million dollars projected this year.
That is why Argentina raised the possibility of increase export volumesespecially those of added value, to reestablish “a balance”they remark from the Government.
Bilateral with Georgieva
Another favorable point in the President’s tour was the bilateral meeting he held on Wednesday with Georgievawho told her that it is very important that the Argentina stay the course economically, “just as it did successfully” over the last few months, and the need for keep working on lowering inflation.
It was talked about impact of the war in Ukraine and of the second review of the Fundin which the difiscal discipline carried out by the Ministry of Economy.
At the G20, the leaders of the member countries requested in the Final statement the IMF surcharge policy review, in line with the proposal of the Argentine Government from the G-20 Summit in Rome, a year ago. He had support from Germany, France, South Africa, Brazil, Spain and Mexico.
there is also the commitment for an amount of US$ 81,600 million, through the voluntary channeling of Special drawing rights (SDR) or equivalent contributions, for “all vulnerable countries“. And seek the commitment of all countries capable of meeting the total global ambition of USD 100 billion of voluntary contributions for those in the process of development.
Another Argentine position at the Summit was need to “restore peace” on the war In Ukraine, because “there is nothing more revolutionary” than contribute to the “global recovery” and point to the food safety to “end hunger”, in addition to highlighting the importance of public healthafter what happened with the Covid-19 pandemic.
On the first point, the war cost Argentina almost 5,000 million dollars.
For the second item, Latin America and the Caribbean faced in 2020 the worst economic contraction in its history, with a setback of 27 years in the levels of extreme poverty.
The Argentine contribution is the production of millions of tons of soybean, wheat, corn and sunflower oil which, for the most part, is intended for the foreign market, was remarked at the Summit.
And about the third, the challenge is the post-pandemic, specifically in Latin America, which concentrates 8% of the world population, but had 26% of the total deaths related to the coronavirus. There, Argentina insisted, as in other summits or meetings, that medicines, treatments and vaccines against Covid-19 are global public goods.
Bilateral with Macron
Last week, in Paris and as part of the tour, Fernández and his peers from France, Emmanuel Macron, and from Colombia, Gustavo Petro, launched the mechanisms of the so-called “Contact Group”, where they sat the ruling party and the opposition of Venezuela at the negotiating table, so that human rights and democracy can be fully governed in that country and without interventionism, within the framework of a process that will lead to the 2024 presidential elections.
In addition, Fernández reviewed in a bilateral meeting with Macron issues related to climate change, gender, discrimination, peace and human rights, in addition to the investments of the European country in Argentina.
They also analyzed the situation in the southern hemisphere after the last electionssuch as the triumph of Luiz Inácio Lula da Silva in Brazil, and the war in Ukraine and its harmful effects, with concern in addition to the eventual use of nuclear weapons and in a scenario where the FAO is announcing a famine that is going to reach 300 million inhabitants in the world, the majority in the Southern Hemisphere.
A negative paragraph on the tour was the erosive gastritis with signs of bleeding suffered by the President in Bali last Tuesday, after an initial episode of hypotension and dizziness prior to the start of the G20 Summit.
After the general concern in the entourage, this decompensation forced to limit its activities in Indonesia, such as suspending bilateral agreements with the president of the Council of Ministers of Italy, Giorgia Meloni; German Chancellor Olaf Scholz and Saudi Arabian Prince Mohamed bin Salman and work under medical care.
For example today, as a closing of the tour, held a meeting in Madrid with Yolanda Díaz Pérez, second vice president of Spain.