With hyperinflation, Argentina announces price freeze on 1,500 products



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O presidente da Argentina, Alberto Fernández, fala durante coletiva de imprensa.
The president of Argentina, Alberto Fernández, speaks during a press conference. | Photo: EFE/Juan Ignacio Roncoroni

The Argentine government announced this Friday () an agreement with supermarkets and suppliers of mass consumer goods to freeze or regulate prices of about 1.372 products, in an attempt to contain inflation that should reach 59% in December, in the midst of a major economic and political crisis in the Peronist government of Alberto Fernández.

The measure should cover products such as food, beverages, hygiene and cleaning items. Argentines who notice a price increase, as soon as the measure goes into effect, will have at their disposal an application that will be created by the government to inform, in a broad and official way, the “frozen” price of the products.

Some items will have a high of 4 % before entering the four-month price freeze scheme, while others will start the program at current rates, but may increase by up to 4% per month.

With elections scheduled for next year and poverty levels close to 13%, thousands of Argentines protested on Thursday () against the government and the International Monetary Fund (IMF), which lent billions of dollars to the Latin American country.

Spiral prices undermine the purchasing power of consumers. Consumers and dwindling foreign currency reserves create risks for the economy. The value of different products in the country is rising at the fastest pace since the 1990s 59, due to problems caused by printing money and vicious cycles of price increases by companies, compounded by global increases in the costs of fertilizers for agriculture and gas imports.

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