Argentine president to allow provinces circulate own currencies

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Argentine President Javier Milei promised not to oppose provinces’ attempts to launch their own currencies after a public exchange between Milei and the governor of La Rioja province, Ricardo Quintela. 

On Jan. 14, during an interview with Radio Mitre, Milei confirmed that he would not legally oppose the creation of local currencies by provincial authorities in Argentina. The president believes that the market will ultimately decide on the value of the projects, but he warned that “quasi-currencies” will spur up inflation and those accepting them will end up scammed:

“Those who receive payments in quasi-currencies from irresponsible governors will clearly see a loss of their income […] What is not taken from them through budgetary adjustment will be taken from them via inflation in the quasi-currency.”

Quintela, the governor of La Rioja, intends to create a separate currency for the province after Milei devalued the Argentine peso by 50% after taking office on Dec. 10, 2023, to tame soaring inflation in the country, which is at its highest levels in 32 years. The new president also cut the funds allocated from the federal budget to provinces. 

Calling such measures “the abandonment by the nation” and citing the necessity of paying salaries to policemen, Quintela requested La Rioja’s legislature to prepare the legal base for minting the local currency. In December 2023, the governor of Buenos Aires province, Axel Kicillof, also publicly contemplated the issue of local currency.

Related: Who is Javier Milei, Argentina’s market-friendly president?

Meanwhile, in Rosario, Argentina’s third most populated city, a local landlord and tenant sealed an agreement for the rent to be paid in Bitcoin (BTC). The contract is the first of its kind in Argentina, made possible by recent law amendments by the new presidential administration.

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Source: Cointelegraph