Performing far below its potential, Argentina’s economy has been stifled by blatant disregard for both the rule of law and limited government. In a presidential runoff election in late November 2015, center-right candidate Mauricio Macri defeated President Cristina Fernandez de Kirchner’s hand-picked successor, Daniel Scioli, sending shock waves through the Peronist political establishment. The private sector remains marginalized by structural and institutional impediments caused by ever-growing government encroachment into the marketplace.
The judicial system has become more vulnerable to political interference, and corruption has been prevalent.
Macri campaigned with promises to end abuses that have plagued Argentina’s political and economic environments, including fiscal profligacy, labor unrest, rising protectionism, corruption, and expropriations. Drug-related violence has increased as international criminal organizations use the country as both an operational base and a transit route.

The labor market remains rigidly controlled and severely impedes dynamic employment creation. A wide range of non-tariff barriers and foreign investment restrictions give Argentina one of the world’s worst trade and investment climates. Argentina, which is rich in natural resources and has an educated and sophisticated population, has performed far below its potential.
Rebuffing IMF censure, the government underreported official inflation statistics and increased deficit spending on energy and other subsidies ahead of the 2015 presidential election.
The financial system remains hobbled by state interference and uncertainty about the direction of economic policies.
Beyond the problems inherent in Peronist authoritarianism, the government has made a series of high-profile policy mistakes, including continued claims to the Falkland Islands and a failure to settle with a small number of remaining “hold-out” creditors that led to a default on its restructured debt in 2014.

The lower courts are highly politicized, although the Supreme Court maintains relative independence despite intense pressure from the government. These mistakes have positioned Argentina outside the mainstream of the international community.

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