Argentina Today: Inflation rate has skyrocketed past 100%, extreme heatwave, Argentina and Ecuador’s diplomatic dispute

These are the trending news headlines in Argentina on Thursday March 16, 2023

These are the trending news headlines in Argentina on Thursday March 16, 2023

– Argentina’s annual inflation rate has skyrocketed past 100%, according to government data released on Tuesday, marking the first time it has hit triple figures since the country’s period of hyperinflation in 1991. Inflation over 12 months rose to 102.5% in February, with a 6.6% monthly rise in the Consumer Price Index and a 13.1% year-to-date increase. Rising prices are squeezing purchasing power and savings, and affecting the country’s economic growth and ruling party’s chances in upcoming elections. The government’s attempts to control inflation, such as capping prices and limiting grain exports to boost domestic supply, have not been successful, leading to frustration and anger among the public.

– Argentina is experiencing an extreme heatwave that is causing damage to crops, increasing wildfires, and adding further strain to an already struggling economy. According to a climatologist, this late-summer heatwave is unprecedented in Argentina’s history. The country experienced its hottest summer on record, and temperatures in the first 10 days of March were 8 to 10 degrees Celsius above normal in east-central Argentina. The heatwave has been caused by the La Niña climate pattern, which tends to bring hotter, drier summers to the region. The situation has further frustrated Argentines, who are already struggling with the effects of a deep economic crisis.

– Argentina and Ecuador are embroiled in a diplomatic dispute after a former Ecuadorian Cabinet minister who had been convicted of corruption and taken refuge with the Argentine ambassador escaped from Ecuador’s capital to Venezuela. Both countries have expelled the other’s ambassador due to their disagreement over the handling of María Angeles Duarte. Duarte had been living in the residence of the Argentine ambassador in Quito since August 2020 to avoid serving an eight-year corruption sentence. Argentina had offered Duarte political asylum, but Ecuador refused to grant her safe passage. Ecuador accused Argentina of complicity in Duarte’s escape and summoned its ambassador, Gabriel Fuks, telling him to leave the country. Argentina followed suit, ordering the expulsion of Ecuador’s ambassador in Buenos Aires, Xavier Monge. While experts say this may not lead to a rupture in relations, the two countries are facing a difficult situation, with each blaming the other for the dispute.

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