The utilisation of installed capacity in the industry rose in December to 56.9%, compared to a year earlier, the National Institute of Statistics and Census (Indec) reported on Wednesday. Among the sectors with higher levels are petroleum refining (78.6%), chemical substances and products (68.8%), paper and cardboard (68.1%), basic metal industries (66.1%), and food and beverage products (63.3%).In contrast, the automotive industry decreased by 21.1% compared to December 2018.
Auto sales in Argentina may drop as much as 15% in 2020, below 400,000 units, as the country faces a difficult debt restructuring and economic crisis, according to Fiat Chrysler’s CEO for Latin America, Antonio Filosa. The automaker plans to keep its production in the country considering its long-term prospects though. Filosa predicts auto sales to grow 1.5% en the whole region and 6% in Brazil.
The presidents of Brazil, Jair Bolsonaro and Argentina, Alberto Fernández might hold their first meeting on March 1 in Montevideo, when they attend the inauguration ceremony of new Uruguay president, Luis Alberto Lacalle Pou. Bolsonaro made the suggestion of the place and date when he received in Brasilia on Wednesday, the Argentine Foreign Minister, Felipe Solá, the first sign of reducing tensions between both heads of State, of opposing ideologies
Argentina’s economy minister, Martín Guzmán, warned bondholders to brace for significant losses as the country restructures its debt “focused on sustainability” amid an economic crisis. His comments at a congressional hearing on Wednesday set the tone for tense negotiations with sovereign debt bondholders, among them major investment funds such as BlackRock and Fidelity. He also said the government won’t reduce its fiscal deficit in 2020.
Container terminals TecPlata of Argentina and Terport of Paraguay sealed a collaboration agreement to develop new connections between their hubs. Tecplata, part of Philippine holding International Container Terminal Services Inc. (Ictsi), could become the most important overseas transshipment centre for Paraguayan cargoes. Terport, a joint venture of Compañía Marítima Paraguaya and Grupo Navemar, operates San Antonio and modern Villeta terminals.
Brazilian President Jair Bolsonaro on Wednesday hosts Argentina’s Foreign Affairs Minister Felipe Solá, who will also meet his counterpart Ernesto Araújo. They will discuss bilateral trade, the Mercosur customs union and Venezuela, according to official sources in Brasilia. Relations between the two key trade partners worsened late last year as Bolsonaro’s far-right administration clashed with Alberto Fernandez’s left-leaning government.
State-owned Aerolíneas Argentinas will add new flights to New York and Madrid this year and get its five Boeing 737 MAX airplanes back online, said Pablo Ceriani, the CEO of the company appointed in December by Argentine president Alberto Fernández. With a current operating deficit of $570 million, Ceriani expects income to hit $1.7 billion in 2020 thanks to the sale of nearly 13 million tickets.
The U.S. Department of Commerce has decided to remove Argentina and other 24 countries of their list of developing countries, which may restrict trade benefits granted to nations in this category. According to Argentine Foreign Ministry sources, the measure “still has no direct consequences” and the Embassy in Washington will continue to monitor the issue.
A little more than three million foreign tourists visited Argentina in the twelve months of 2019, this is 11.1% more than the previous year, according to the latest International Tourism Statistics report from the National Institute of Statistics and Census (Indec) . On the contrary, about four million Argentinians travel abroad, which meant an inter-annual fall of 11.9%. In December, arrivals increased 3.3% and departures fell 13% year-on-year.
A team of experts from the International Monetary Fund (IMF), due to arrive in Argentina this Wednesday for crucial talks with the government, have extended their visit by a further four days. The team will be headed by Julie Kozack, the IMF’s deputy director of the Fund’s Western Hemisphere Department, and Luis Cubeddu, the IMF’s mission chief for Argentina, and will remain in the Argentine capital until February 19 “to permit dialogue and deeper work on [debt] issues,” a Fund spokesperson said.