The long-awaited conversation between President Mauricio Macri and the winner of past Sunday’s primary election, opposition leader Alberto Fernández, has finally happened.
Macri confirmed the conversation on Twitter after Fernández told the press he initially ignored the president’s call because he was teaching classes.
“Recently we had a good and long telephone conversation with Alberto Fernández,” Macri wrote on Twitter. “He pledged to collaborate on all possible so that this electoral process, and the political uncertainty that it generates, affects as little as possible the economy of Argentines.”
The president’s morning was filled with gestures to the public. After his apology to voters for Monday’s press conference and the announcement of new economic measures to increase consumption, Macri sent a message to Fernandez suggesting the duo “bring ourselves together to speak.”
A spokesman for Fernández confirmed the phone call took place. Earlier, Fernández himself acknowledged having received a text message from the president. “I was teaching at the university, saw the message but couldn’t answer,” he told reporters outside of his campaign headquarters in Buenos Aires.
During an interview with El Destape Radio earlier in the day, however, Fernández said the government’s recent economic announcement “arrived late,” and put in doubt the possibility of a meeting with the current president.
“It doesn’t make sense that we meet because I conceive of another country,” the Frente de Todos leader said in the interview. “The president wants my help so that he can finish his term. He should finish it and should not put it in doubt.”
The economic policies announced by Macri on Wednesday include measures to create tax breaks and subsidies for worker’s wages, as well as a freeze on gas prices.
Markets have been eager for signs of policy coordination and concrete measures to staunch the sell-off. So far, however, investors seem to be unconvinced – the peso added to losses for a third consecutive day and bonds sank further into distress with investment firms boosting odds of a debt default in coming years.