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  • Social movements have been at the forefront of the struggles against austerity in Macri's Argentina.

    Social movements have been at the forefront of the struggles against austerity in Macri's Argentina. | Photo: Reuters

Published 24 April 2018
Opinion

Decrease in public trust are linked to new rate hikes in public services, inflation and conflicts of interest within Macri’s cabinet.

Public trust in Argentine President Mauricio Macri's government have sunk to its lowest point since he was elected president in December 2015. According to a study published by the School of Government at the University Torcuato Di Tella, citizens trust in government and the president fell by 11 percentage points between March and April.

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The ratings in the monthly survey have been blamed on rate hikes in public services, inflation, and allegations of corruption and conflicts of interest within Macri’s cabinet.

Only 41.4 percent of Argentines trust the government with an even smaller percentage -  32.4 percent - having a favorable view of the administration.

The researchers behind the study explained the results “reflect a context marked by rate hikes, the perception that the official inflation mark will not be reached, and the discussion about conflicts of interest and/or questionable investments by government officials.”

Earlier in April, Macri's government announced an increase in the electricity rates, the second rate hike during his government.

Since 2015 tariffs on public transportation, water, gas, and electricity have continued to rise while inflation has negatively impacted workers’ purchasing power.

The members of the president's Cambiemos party have also faced criticism for following recommendations by the International Monetary Fund to implement strict austerity measures and enact massive government spending cuts to social programs and subsidies.

Late last year Macri’s government also successfully pushed for a pension reform widely opposed by social movements, workers’ union, and pensioners. The groups contend that the changes, which hurt the elderly, and other austerity measures took place while the government facilitated tax breaks for the financial sector and large agro-exporters.

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