Economy Minister Sergio Massa revealed on Monday that the Argentine government will raise the threshold for an income tax to AR$1.7 million pesos per month (US$2,620 at the MEP exchange rate, US$2,404 at the blue chip swap rate), beginning in October. The announcement comes as the Union por la Patria candidate enters the home stretch in his campaign to be Argentina’s next president.
The General Confederation of Labor (CGT, by its Spanish acronym) confirmed to the Herald that Massa convened the institution’s entire board of directors for the announcement. Among the labor leaders present were Héctor Daer (Health), Sergio Palazzo (Banking), Hugo and Pablo Moyano (Trucking), Gerardo Martínez (Construction), Julio Piumato (Judiciary), Cachorro Godoy (State), Hugo Yasky (Argentine Workers’ Central Union), and Ricardo Pignanelli (Union of Automative Mechanics and Allied Workers), among others.
Also on hand were Labor Minister Kelly Olmos and Minister of the Interior Eduardo de Pedro, as well as key legislators from Union por la Patria, including President of the Chamber of Deputies Cecilia Moreau and Deputy Máximo Kirchner.
In a nine-page document titled “Eliminación Impuesto a Las Ganancias Trabajadores y Jubilados” (“Elimination of the Income Tax for Workers and Pensioners”), the Economy Ministry noted that 890,000 people are currently paying the income tax and that 800,000 would become exempt. The measure aims to make the tax the exclusive burden of CEOs, managers, sub-managers, privileged pensioners, and other high-income earners.
“We’re not going to wait until the end of the year,” the document concludes. “By decree, we’re going to raise the floor to AR$1.7 million, beginning in October.”
In addition to the decree, which President Alberto Fernández is sure to support, the Economy Minister plans to send a bill to Congress that would guarantee the threshold for an income tax remains 15 times that of the minimum salary. That amounts to approximately AR$1.8 million as of this writing. If passed, these measures would go into effect between January and July 2024.
Shortly after making his announcement, Massa ventured to the Economy Ministry off of Plaza de Mayo to address union members and pose for pictures with labor leaders.
“Over the next 45 days, the future of Argentina is at stake,” he told a jubilant crowd. “We must decide whether we are a country that defends public education, work, and national industry, its sovereignty, and its currency, or whether we’re one where workers lose their rights and the possibility of educating their children at public universities, as well as our industrial development.”
“I ask you, with all of my heart, thinking about the country, the future, those without work, national industry, and public universities, that we do everything possible on October 22 to build on the triumphs of workers, the triumphs of Peronism, and the triumphs of Argentina,” Massa added.