Argentina’s Economy Minister Sergio Massa said the country can grow above three percent this year while still slowing its sky-high inflation.
“You can fight inflation and get spending in order without chilling the economy and putting forward painful adjustments,” Massa said in a rare interview published Sunday in the Perfil newspaper.
Gross domestic product climbed “quite far above” five percent last year, he said.
Massa, who took office in July, said inflation stayed under five percent in December compared with a month earlier, after slowing to 4.9 percent in November. Economists surveyed by Bloomberg expect it to have quickened to 5.2 percent when the data are published Thursday.
Massa is aiming for price growth to be below four percent in April, he said.
The former lower house speaker was coy when asked in the interview whether he plans to run for president in 2024.
“I don’t remember any case where the economy minister has been a presidential candidate,” he said. “The truth is that before looking at 2024, I want for this year to be a year where I get the result I want in every measure I am tasked with.”
The government has been making progress on wage negotiations in the textile and banking sectors and with bus drivers, Massa said.
Argentina’s Central Bank said separately Sunday it’s increasing its swap line with China by 35 billion yuan (US$5 billion).
by Max de Haldevang, Bloomberg