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Argentina: Government denies serious crisis in fruit sector

Argentina is experiencing a crisis in the fruit sector. Regionally, growers are suffering from overwhelming competition. Regions like the del Valle de Río Negro and Neuquén are expecting heavy losses in 2013. Local costs are ever increasing and the government seems unwilling to really tackle the issue.

Many growers claim the national government does nothing to alleviate the problem, while local government outright states it is powerless to intervene on a structural basis. Farmers are reminding authorities of the 1996 crisis, when signs of regional decline in the sector went unnoticed and led to a major devaluation of local produce. Government officials not only denied the severity of the crisis, they steadfastly defended existing policies.

While authorities calmly debated the problem, thousands of workers ended up on the street, export plummeted and a vicious circle culminated in dozens of bankruptcies and spiralling unemployment. Now, growers fear history might repeat itself, as authorities continue to rely upon the same old models.



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