Argentina announces low taxes and credits to combat economic effects of coronavirus

BUENOS AIRES, Mar 17 (Reuters) – The Argentine government announced on Tuesday a series of “decisive” economic measures, such as a reduction in taxes and cheap credits, to protect production and the level of employment from the effects of the coronavirus.

The country has so far registered 65 cases and two deaths, and is betting to anticipate an escalation of the outbreak with ironclad measures such as the closure of borders, as other nations in the region did.

“We are here to take decisive measures to ensure that economic activity will work,” Economy Minister Martín Guzmán told reporters.

The official added that the center-left government will lower taxes on companies, increase spending on public works and launch 200,000 cheap loans for small companies and entrepreneurs.

Earlier, the administration of President Alberto Fernández had announced greater subsidies for the unemployed and retirees, in order to avoid a further drop in consumption at a time when Argentina is going through a recession with high inflation.

(Report by Nicolás Misculin, Edited by Manuel Farías)