WASHINGTON: Argentina will start cutting its soyabean export tax by 0.5 percentage point every month for two years starting in January 2018, resulting in a 12-point reduction to 18 percent by the end of 2019, the government said in a decree on Monday. When free-market proponent Mauricio Macri became president in December 2015, he cut the tax to 30 percent from 35 percent. He promised at the time that he would keep chopping the levy by 5 percentage points per year every year of his administration. But budget concerns have put that plan on hold.
The half-point-per-month export tax reduction in 2018 and 2019 will also apply to the 27-percent levy currently placed on soyaoil and soyameal exports. Argentina is the world’s top soyaoil and soyameal exporter and its No 3 supplier of raw soyabeans. Considering his government’s deficit target of 4.2 percent of gross domestic product for 2017, Macri has softened some of his free market reforms. Soon after taking office he let the peso currency float and eliminated wheat and corn export taxes.