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ECONOMY | 28-07-2021 22:00

Argentina among top 15 countries with most import barriers, says WTO report

New WTO and UNCTAD technical report warns country is among those which slap the most levies on the entry of products, with Brazil next in 16th position.

A new report from the World Trade Organisation (WTO) and the United Nations has concluded that Argentina is among the top nations in the world when it comes to applying tariffs.

According to the 2021 edition of World Tariff Profiles, a report prepared by the World Trade Organisation (WTO) and the United Nations Conference on Trade and Development (UNCTAD), Argentina ranks 15th among the countries which most block the entry of products.

These barriers are applied via import duties or tariffs, prompting daily complaints by importers whose delays in obtaining authorisation for the entry of goods are increasingly extended.

Argentina occupies 15th place among the 135 countries whose statistics were covered by this survey with sky-high tariffs.

Added to all these complications are the high competitive costs of local companies.

Brazil does not lag far behind its neighbour, ranking 16th with tariffs averaging 13.3 percent.

These data revive the debate between the other founding Mercosur members (Brazil, Paraguay and Uruguay) with Argentina as to the course which the regional bloc should adopt. Argentina’s neighbours wish to lower the Common External Tariff to 10 percent while Argentina wants to leave the protectionist barriers relatively unaffected.

While that debate continues, Argentina has enormous difficulties attracting investments while the gap between official and parallel exchange rates is around 90 percent.

– TIMES/NA

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