By Sergio Garcia
After announcing it for several days, President Milei finally made announced the presentation of his mega DNU (Necessary and Urgent Decree) tonight. He mentioned and highlighted thirty of the many aspects it contains.
Among the deregulations mentioned are the following 30 points:
Repeal of the Rent Law: for the real estate market to work smoothly again and renting no longer be an odyssey.
Repeal of the Market Shelf Law so that the State stops interfering in the decisions of Argentine merchants.
Repeal of the National Purchase Law that only benefits certain powerful players.
Repeal of the Price Observatory of the Ministry of Economy to avoid the persecution of companies.
Repeal of the Industrial Promotion Law.
Repeal of the Trade Promotion Law.
Repeal of the regulations that prevent the privatization of public companies.
Repeal of the State companies regime.
Transformation of all State companies into public limited companies for subsequent privatization.
Modernization of the labor regime to facilitate the process of generating genuine employment.
Reform of the Customs Code to facilitate international trade.
Repeal of the Land Law to promote investments.
Modification of the Fire Management Law.
Repeal of the obligations that sugar mills have regarding sugar production.
Liberation of the legal regime applicable to the wine sector.
Repeal of the national mining trade system and the Mining Information Bank.
Authorization for the transfer of the total or partial share package of Aerolíneas Argentinas (the national airline, now a public company with a majority of shares owned by the State).
Implementation of the open skies policy.
Modification of the Civil and Commercial Code to reinforce the principle of contractual freedom between parties.
Modification of the Civil and Commercial Code to guarantee that obligations contracted in foreign currency be paid in the agreed currency.
Modification of the regulatory framework of prepaid medicine and union-run health service providers.
Elimination of price restrictions on the prepaid healthcare industry.
Incorporation of prepaid healthcare companies into the union-run health service system.
Establishment of the electronic prescription to streamline health services and minimize costs.
Modifications to the regime of pharmaceutical companies to promote competition and reduce costs.
Modification of the Corporate Law so that football clubs can become public limited companies if they wish to do so.
Deregulation of satellite internet services.
Deregulation of the tourism sector by eliminating the monopoly of tourism agencies.
Incorporation of digital tools for automotive registration procedures.
The actual scope of these measures
The measures that were mentioned, along with many others, have the common thread of favoring in large capitalist and business groups, freeing them from all State control and allowing them to act on each issue according to their profits without any type of control.
To this, we must add that the so-called “modernization of the labor regime” is to advance in removing acquired rights to build a regime of slavery favoring employers in terms of payment of overtime, dismissals and compensation, among other things that will make the life of millions of employees worse. Additionally, the complete document of the DNU also advances in threatening or sanctioning those who carry out measures of struggle in the workplace and attacks the right to strike in sensitive places like education.
As a whole, the entire plan has nothing new, it is based on old recipes with an updated discursive presentation, attacking privileged politicians to make appeal to their social base. But at the same time, they are another sign that this government is determined to try to advance rapidly in the coming months with structural changes that will guarantee the profits of a few and the impoverishment of millions with the removal of democratic rights.
A leap in authoritarianism
At the same time, the mere existence of the mega DNU shows the character of a government and a president who claims to defend freedom, but less than two weeks into his government already wants to govern by decree. It is an authoritarian and antidemocratic leap, which aims to generate fundamental and structural changes, something requested by the big bourgeoisie and the IMF, through a decree. It is a reactionary policy that parallels the repressive and illegal actions of his security minister, who today suffered her first setback with thousands marching to Plaza de Mayo and overwhelming her security forces, which failed to prevent it.
The response on the streets is about to intensify
Only minutes had passed since Milei’s announcement when the pots and pans began to sound throughout the neighborhoods of Buenos Aires and various municipalities of Greater Buenos Aires, as well as Mar del Plata, Rosario, Mendoza, La Plata and other cities. As we write this first analysis, the pots and pans continue to ring, and we will see how far they go. For now, neighbors are blocking streets in many places, also defeating Bullrich’s protocol tonight. But the truth is that they are taking place in many places at the same time and are a symptom of what is to come, which may grow much more massive than today, in rejection to these measures.
At the same time, we know that such a reactionary package, including a direct attack on workers, should lead the CGT to call for measures of struggle right away. However, beyond some statements, as always, they say nothing about these measures. We must demand that they take action more than ever because, against with such an attack, it is insufficient to take legal actions or express their opposition. They must call to carry out all necessary measures, an active general strike and a national plan of struggle. Meanwhile, we must organize all who want to fight against all this in each workplace.
Obviously, this December 20 is not just another anniversary. It began with a repressive attack at train stations and the harassment of people on their way to the city center. It continued with thousands defying Bullrich’s protocol and defeating it. Then Milei showed up announcing his package in favor of the capitalist leaders of the caste and against the people. And the day ends with cacerolazos (protests with people banging pots and pans) in many places. This is the situation in Argentina, and it is going to grow ever tenser. Milei is playing with fire and he will get burned.