February 2, 2013
from BusinessInsider Website
It has come to this:
This story goes back to 2007, when late Argentine President Nestor Kirchner fired the statisticians in INDEC (the Argentine Bureau of Statistics) and replaced them.
Since then the country has reported inflation numbers that differ wildly from those of independent analysts - a difference of 10% versus 25% (check out some charts on that here).
To keep up this charade, the government has fined statisticians that release numbers that contradict INDEC's. To current president Cristina Fernandez de Kirchner's administration, these people are criminals.
And the IMF is tired of this. At the end of last year the body's Executive Board discussed what they would do with the country. Last night they made an official decision.
Argentina must change its ways or join Czechoslovakia as the only countries to ever be forced out of the IMF and lose the funding that comes with that. Argentina could also lose its status as a G20 country.
Here's the release from the IMF:
The IMF’s Executive Board met on February 1, 2013 to consider the Managing Director’s report on Argentina’s progress in implementing remedial measures to address the quality of the official data reported to the Fund for the Consumer Price Index for Greater Buenos Aires (CPI-GBA) and Gross Domestic Product (GDP).
The Board called on Argentina to adopt the remedial measures to address the inaccuracy of CPI-GBA and GDP data without further delay, and in any event, no later than September 29, 2013.
The measures applicable to the CPI-GBA and GDP aim at aligning these indicators with the international statistical understandings and guidelines that ensure accurate measurement.
The Kirchner administration is, as ever, defiant.
They continue to insist that the IMF is out of line and released this communiqué in response to the ruling requesting a meeting with the IMF to discuss it (Telam reports).
...Economy Minister Hernán Lorenzino said that the latest International Monetary Fund (IMF) criticism to Argentina's statistical system “is a clear example of unequal treatment and of double standard” on the part of the monetary institution in its relationship with some of its member countries.
The Argentine Government requested “an extraordinary meeting of the Board of Governors of the IMF, to review its policy towards our country as well as its performance and responsibility in the world economic and financial crisis”, said the Ministry's communiqué.
It also reminded that,
Cristina Fernandez de Kirchner is not known for standing down.
She is not known for changing her mind. She is not known for accepting the measures of international agencies that she considers harmful to her country's interest.
Expect a fight.