Argentinian civil servants face pay freezes because of spending cuts

30 Jan 18

Some government employees in Argentina will not receive pay rises this year because of spending cuts, the president has said.

President Mauricio Macri also announced yesterday that he would get rid of 1,000 “political positions” and the firing of family members appointed as advisers by government ministers.

It is expected to save the government between $75m to $77m a year.

The pay freezes and staffing changes will apply to national government and appear not to include local and state levels.

Macri said in a televised address that “austerity has to be part of politics”, as he announced the pay freeze on executive branch government employees.

“Change is serious. What we have proposed is much more than economic change, it is cultural change,” he said.

“We want to change the culture of power in Argentina. We all have to concede for something for the benefit of the greater whole.”

He was elected in 2015 with a pledge to free the markets and improve the country’s business climate. He also promised to fight corruption and revive the economy when he was first elected.

Although the president has introduced a series of business-friendly legislations late last year following his mid-term election win, his pension reform bill last month resulted in violent protests and a decline in his approval ratings.

He is expected to run for the elections next year.

The pay freeze and government cuts are expected to have limited impact on the budget, but the president said he hopes to be followed by local governments to reduce the country’s high deficit.

Last year, the OECD urged Argentina to introduce further reforms to boost productivity and the competitiveness of the economy

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