Presidential candidate and national deputy Javier Milei assured that if elected, he would quickly eliminate 13% of public expenditure in the first year of his administration by eliminating public investment in infrastructure works, monetary transfers to the provinces, and economic subsidies. He also highlighted his well-known idea to close all state-owned companies.
He has previously referred to this economic program as his “Chainsaw Plan,” a term he coined on a tour of Córdoba province in June 2022.
Within the framework of the Llao Llao Forum, a summit that gathers more than a hundred important businessmen from different sectors, Milei talked to the Herald’s sister publication Ámbito and other media outlets.
“I am going to eliminate public works and switch to a Chilean-style private initiative system,” said Milei, who is the leader of the far-right coalition La Libertad Avanza. “We are also proposing to eliminate discretionary transfers to the provinces with the theft that this cost implies for the people.”
“The other thing we are proposing is the elimination of economic subsidies.”
“With those cuts, I will have already made a good adjustment. But then you have the issue of state-owned companies, which I believe should be closed because they are basically a mechanism through which politics makes money by destroying companies,” he said. “The other thing that remains, which is more complicated, is the privileged pensions.”
“Privileged pensions” are very generous pensions awarded to judges, the majority of foreign affairs officials, and some scientific researchers. According to Milei, this would cut public spending by a further 2%.
In the press conference, Milei focused on explaining his plan to dollarize the economy.
“I will do my best to explain it in a simple way,” he said before entering the meeting. When asked by Ámbito, the economist said “it is hard to estimate” which exchange rate would be used to eliminate pesos and change the entire currency to dollars.
Furthermore, he said that “there will be no social cost” because he contends that the measure would put an end to inflation which hits “the most vulnerable between 25 and 30 times harder”.
“I have an adjustment program strong enough so that the Treasury, instead of being an element that increases the amount of money in circulation, absorbs money,” he said.
Milei’s speech was highly awaited by the businessmen at this forum, who last year received him as an “outsider.” Today, he was received as a presidential candidate who, according to some polls, could make it to a second round in the election.