This year’s Jornada, a multidisciplinary business forum dedicated to Argentina, aims to explore the prospects of the country after the recent change of government. Measures taken by newly elected Mauricio Macri, the first non-Peronist president in the last 16 years, show promising dynamics in the economic sphere attracting foreign investors. Exports have been stimulated, with the aim to re-establish growth. The policies put in place by president Macri within the first three months after his election include relaxation of currency restrictions and abolishment of export taxes on principal agricultural products. By the end of February, the 15-year debt dispute with US holdouts regarding the 82 billion dollar default has been finally resolved, but still needs to pass congress. Optimism is high, even if inflation remains at more than 30 percent, and the peso is overvalued. On an international level, it will be interesting to see how Macri navigates China’s advances and how he manages the trade relations with this increasingly important partner. The latest rapprochement entails the completion of a Chinese base for satellite launches in Patagonia, also fit for military use.
President Macri promises to engage all sides in dialogue in order to tackle social challenges and avoid paralysing the country. However, the recent elections demonstrated how divided Argentina’s society is, and it remains to be seen whether the current cleavage between kirchneristas and macristas can be mitigated. After his political honeymoon, Mauricio Macri already faces rising discontent, e.g. a nationwide strike by public sector workers, after he had dismissed 16’000 state employees. Further tensions rose due to the crackdown ordered against protesters.
The Jornada Argentina organized by the Centro Latinoamericano-Suizo (CLS-HSG) will try to analyse socio-cultural processes and intercultural Argentinean-Swiss differences beyond national clichés.
Researchers and experienced professionals will share their insights about the region, from their respective economic, political, legal, financial, social, cultural and artistic perspectives, providing the public with a panoramic view on current opportunities of ‘doing business in Argentina’.
The forum promotes an open discussion between attendants and lecturers.