By Germán Negro for Canal C
The latest economic failures, which led the country to have half of its inhabitants in poverty, and the lack of a plan that marks a horizon beyond the short term, reopened the way for one of the most important economic study entities in the country: the Mediterranean Foundation. Far from looking from the sidelines, it has already taken the route to start showing its menu with a view to 2023.
When he took over as head of IERAL, the Foundation’s institute for studies and statistics, created by Domingo Cavallo in 1977, the economist Carlos Melconián (former president of Banco Nación) acknowledged that “the central objective” is the preparation of “an economic plan productive and federal” that is on the options card of those who run for president in the next elections.
For this reason, the head of the Mediterranean, María Pía Astori, and Melconián began to tour the interior regions, with the exception that each season includes a meeting with the governors. For example, in recent days they met with the leaders Oscar Herrera Ahuad (Misiones), Gustavo Sáenz (Salta) and Omar Gutiérrez Neuquén, who listened to how Melconián and the Cordovan delegation presented a diagnosis and possible medicine.
Although he does not recognize it in public, the Mediterranean hopes that the future president could be one of his favorite sons (or someone blessed by him): Juan Schiaretti, who in recent days was supported by a survey by the CB consultancy, which showed numbers that placed him last month as the governor with the best image in the country.
La Mediterránea saw the crowning effort put in by its founders, including Fulvio Pagani and Piero Astori, when Cavallo arrived at the Ministry of Economy of the Nation in 1991, and together with him several professionals worked in its lower divisions began to disembark. Schiaretti himself was Secretary of Commerce and Industry and shaped the current automotive regime, which allows an exchange between the Mercosur countries, including Mexico.
Previously, the current governor of Córdoba was vice president of Fiat in Brazil and left aside a call to join the staff in Turin, due to Cavallo’s call to accompany him during the implementation of the Convertibility program (1991-2000), which broke with a stretch of 50 years of inflation in Argentina. Both left the Menem government for different reasons and in full swing of the program that Roque Fernández, also from Córdoba, would later continue.
The program had its lights and shadows, especially when Menem put the autopilot to try a re-election and avoided the mini-devaluations that experts recommended so that the “one by one” would not be a corcet against local production.
In the Foundation, and perhaps due to the proximity of origin that is very strong in Italian blood, Cavallo (San Francisco) was sponsored by Pagani (Arroyito-Arcor), while Schiaretti (Talleres neighborhood of the city of Córdoba) always had strong support from Astori (Palmar). Both economists had shared classrooms at the National University of Córdoba.
In an economically impoverished, socially agitated and politically atomized Argentina, a complex horizon appears for Melconián’s team. However, it carries behind it a seal that is difficult to avoid (that of the Mediterranean) for those who reach the Government, if they want to promote a paradigm shift capable of raising an economy that in its golden days (early 20th century) had for several months to its GDP at the top of the world ranking.