Buenos Aires, 18 August 2019 (dpa/MIA) – Argentina‘s Treasury Minister Nicolas Dujovne resigned on Saturday, days after President Mauricio Macri suffered a heavy setback in primary elections sending the peso into a nose drive.
In a letter to Macri published by newspaper Clarin, Dujovne said “circumstances” required a “significant renewal in the economic area.”
Dujovne, who took the post in 2017 and led bailout negotiations with the International Monetary Fund last year, said that much was accomplished in terms of taming the deficit and trimming public spending, but “without a doubt mistakes were made.”
According to Clarin, Dujovne will be replaced by Buenos Aires province Economy Minister Hernan Lacunza.
The minister’s resignation comes three days after Macri announced a package of tax cuts and other economic relief measures for workers and companies following a surprise defeat in primaries on Sunday.
Macri took only 32 per cent of the vote, against nearly 48 per cent for opposition candidate Alberto Fernandez. The primaries, which whittled down the number of presidential candidates, were considered an important indicator of public opinion before the presidential elections on October 27.
The defeat, attributed largely to Macri’s austerity policies and Argentina‘s economic difficulties, sent the peso into a nose drive amid fears among investors that a Fernandez presidency could see protectionist policies implemented.
The South American country is in a recession, urban poverty remains high, inflation is running in the double digits and unemployment stood at 10 per cent in the first quarter.