Argentina's interior, public works and housing minister, Rogelio Frigerio (pictured, on the right), said the government aims to increase investment in infrastructure to the equivalent of 6% of GDP from 2% currently, without disclosing a time frame.

The declaration was made during a senate committee meeting, Reuters reported.

The government's national public investment plan for 2016-19 calls for more than US$7bn to be pumped into infrastructure projects to help spur on the country's economy, which is expected to contract 1.5% this year and expand 2.8% in 2017, according to a July IMF report.

"Economic activity [in Argentina] is now likely to begin recovering toward the end of 2016, as inflation moderates gradually, spending is boosted, and interest rates are lowered," the report's author, Alejandro Werner, the IMF's western hemisphere department director, wrote.

Last month the government put out to tender 168 public contracts involving 26bn pesos (US$1.77bn), local paper Clarín reported, citing a report from consultancy C&T Asesores Económicos. Projects include highway and wastewater initiatives, the paper said.


During the senate meeting, Frigerio also presented a public-private partnership (PPP) bill from the executive branch. The aim of the bill is to overhaul the country's existing PPP law and ensure the sharing of risks between the public and private sector.

"The legislation should be very specific; the state should not cover any commercial risk: the private sector should absorb it [...],", said World Bank representative John Pollner, also present at the event. "The exchange risk, and how to deal with it, must be discussed," he added.



CREDIT: Argentina's senate


The governor of Mendoza province, Alfredo Cornejo, has expressed his support for the bill.

Toward the end of June, Reuters added, Argentina's national statistics and census institute Indec indicated that the country's GDP grew 0.5% in Q1.


Source: BNamericas