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    Argentina's President Mauricio Macri gestures during a news conference at the Olivos Presidential Residence in Buenos Aires, Argentina May 16, 2018. | Photo: Reuters

Published 30 January 2019

In a controversial move, the Argentine president launched a reform that would allow privatization and the selling of state-owned athletic centers. 

Argentine President Mauricio Macri signed a Decree of Necessity and Urgency (DNU) Wednesday dissolving the Secretariat of Sports replacing it with a public-private agency, allowing for privatization, tariffs, and the selling of the country's cultural legacy in the form of state assets.

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DNU 92/2019 establishes the creation of the National Sports Agency, which replaces the former Sports Secretariat. It is widely feared that this change will allow land currently controlled by the National Entity for High Sports Performance (Enard) sub-agency of the Secretariat of Sports  to be put up for sale, land located in one of the most expensive areas of the City of Buenos Aires.

"It's crazy. First, the money was taken from Enard, now the Secretariat will disappear. They want to sell the Cenard (sports facility) that has national heritage facilities and also privatize sports," the national deputy of the Front for Victory and member of the Sports Commission, Carlos Castagneto told news organization, Pagina12.

The creation of the National Sports Agency would be crucial to a massive real estate business venture, particularly on Cenard land, which Macri could seek to sell in a joint effort with the mayor of Buenos Aires, Horacio Rodríguez Larreta and the president of the Argentine Olympic Committee, Gerardo Werthein, El Destape reported.

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