Bruno Binetti is a non-resident research fellow with the office of the president at the Inter-American Dialogue, based in Buenos Aires. He was previously a research assistant at the Woodrow Wilson Center for International Scholars and has also worked as a legislative aide in the Argentine Congress. Binetti holds a BA in international studies from Torcuato Di Tella University and an MA in international affairs and development from George Washington University’s Elliott School of International Affairs, where he was a Fulbright Scholar. He writes on Latin American political and economic trends and China- Latin America relations and has taught courses at Torcuato Di Tella University and the Catholic University of Argentina.
In a country used to having strong leaders, Alberto Fernández’s dependency on his still-popular but polarizing vice president could weaken him politically. Sooner or later, this contradiction will need to be resolved, and one of the two Fernandezes will be left standing.
Voters in Argentina elect a new leader and a familiar face as his deputy. Bruno Binetti, non-resident research fellow at the Inter-American Dialogue, spoke with Hazem Sika of Al Jazeera about the Fernandez-Fernandez victory in Argentina. Binetti weighed in on Macri’s shortcomings, implications for the Argentine economy, and political trends in South America.
Each subsequent crisis makes it more difficult for the government to reform the economy without provoking a major social disruption. To escape its never-ending cycle of crises, however, the next president will have to do more than reform the economy; he will have to win back the trust of voters who have grown to expect the worst from their leaders.
Mauricio Macri’s failure confirms that there seems to be no politically sustainable way to open up and reform Argentina’s economy. The long-term benefits of liberalizing, improving competitiveness and reducing fiscal spending might be clear in theory, but the immediate social costs of these policies are simply too high for Argentines to bear.
China has shown patience with Argentina’s political and economic shifts and will likely continue to do so. They want to keep looking for strategic resources for the medium-term and they contemplate the short-term shocks when making an investment.
Many of these leaders that are pushing for the Prosur initiative criticized UNASUR for being a politicized institution that responded to the interests of left-wing leaders such as Hugo Chavez or Lula in Brazil […] I think they are doing the exact same thing with Prosur. How would this institution survive after the incumbents leave office? That is the key question. If we are going to create new institutions every time there is a political shift in Latin America then we are not going to build real sustainable integration.