Argentina’s Paraná River drops to 77-year low, resulting in economic loss and wildfires

Paraná’s water level is the lowest since 1944, the result of a prolonged drought upriver, in southern Brazil. Amidst the drought, ships travelling on the Paraná have been forced to reduce their soy, corn and wheat cargo by 25%, with larger cuts looming. In July, the Argentine government announced a $10.4 million relief fund to offset these economic losses. Government officials have advised citizens to “save water,” and capture rain for home and commercial use. Within these dry conditions, officials are also urging people to stop burning waste or igniting fires to provide pasture. As the Paraná shrinks, thousands of wildfires have raged in the last two years, lighting skies with an eerie orange hue visible from rural farmlands as well as urban luxury apartments. 

Argentina launches employment program for young people

The Argentine government Monday launched a training program for young people, aiming to give them equal access to jobs in the software and related sectors. The program plans to train 60,000 young people by the end of the year. Various industries of the knowledge economy, such as software and computer systems, video games, audiovisual production and post-production, directly and indirectly employ 450,000 people and have the potential to create another 100,000 jobs, said the Government.

Argentina adds new rules to curb COD delays for contracted renewables

The Argentine government has introduced a resolution to accommodate to some extent those renewable energy developers who had been late with reaching commercial operation date (COD) of their auction awarded projects. Argentina awarded PPAs to some 4.5 GW of renewable energy projects through its RenovAr auction programme and over 200 MW via the so-called MiniRen round for small-scale schemes, but the process to get the plants up and running has been exacerbated by the country's prolonged economic crisis and the pandemic.

Government tightens controls on exports of meat, grains and dairy products

Through Resolution 60/2021 published in the Official Gazette, the Ministry of Agriculture has added new requirements to the Regulation for Registration in the Registro Único de Operadores de la Cadena Agroindustrial (RUCA) in order to legally carry out trade. The measure covers exports of meat, grains and dairy products and is part of the government's efforts to tame inflation, which last month reached a peak of 4.8% for the year.

Second Covax delivery of 864,000 AstraZeneca doses arrives

Argentina took delivery of a new shipment of Covid-19 vaccines welcoming 864,000 doses from the AstraZeneca laboratory as part of the World Health Organisation's COVAX scheme. The doses, which arrived on a flight from the Netherlands, come from the nine million vaccines acquired by Argentina through the Covax scheme. This is the second shipment, following on from some 218,000 doses received in March.

Argentina seeks Paris Club deal amid IMF talks

Argentina is pressing the Paris Club to renegotiate debt with the South American country as separate talks to strike a deal with the International Monetary Fund drag on, La Nación reported, citing Economy Minister Martín Guzmán. Guzmán said that Argentina was working to postpone or refinance upcoming debt payments with the group of wealthy countries to avoid a shock that damages the economy at a time when it is recovering.

Patagonia Gold enters into definitive agreements to acquire the Homenaje and Nico Projects in Argentina

Patagonia Gold Corp has entered into definitive agreements to acquire two projects in the Deseado Massif of southern Argentina. Patagonia entered into a definitive option agreement dated April 15, 2021 with Mirasol Resources Ltd. and Mirasol’s wholly owned subsidiary Australis S.A. which grants Patagonia an option to acquire a 75% undivided interest in and to Australis’ rights and interest in the Homenaje project located in Santa Cruz Province, Argentina. Patagonia also entered into a definitive transfer agreement dated April 15, 2021 with the Vendors, which grants Patagonia a 100% undivided interest in and to Australis’ rights and interest in the Nico project located in Santa Cruz Province, Argentina.

Argentina records highest inflation rate in 18 months: 4.8%

Inflation accelerated last month in Argentina at the fastest pace in 18 months, threatening to derail the fragile economic recovery six months before key midterm elections. Consumer prices in Argentina rose 4.8% in March from February, according to the INDEC national statistics bureau. The monthly figure was the highest since September 2019. Annual inflation reached 42.6 percent in March. Prices have now risen 12.4 percent in the first quarter.

Moody’s changes banking system outlooks to stable in Argentina, Paraguay and Panama

Moody's changes banking system outlooks to stable in Argentina, Paraguay and Panama. Outlook change to stable from negative was prompted by improving operating conditions in Paraguay and Panama. The outlook of Argentina’s banking system was also changed to stable from negative driven by banks’ relatively strong fundamentals, despite increasingly challenging operating conditions.