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  • Finance Minister Alfonso Prat-Gay next to President Mauricio Macri

    Finance Minister Alfonso Prat-Gay next to President Mauricio Macri | Photo: Reuters

Inflation "is like being drunk," said President Macri. "Initially it causes some pleasure," but "over time it destroys all possibilities of growth."

The government of Mauricio Macri in Argentina presented to Congress on Thursday its first budget, which projects a 17 percent rate of inflation and a 4.2 percent fiscal deficit.

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Finance Minister Alfonso Prat-Gay said this budget was “different” than past ones because, he said, it is “based on truth.”

The government's objectives will not be met with respect to the deficit, which it had intended to limit to a 3.3 percent, due to irregularities in the pension system and recent price hike in utilities.

President Mauricio Macri said Thursday that "the end of the recession is near," however, and that inflation "is like being drunk: initially it causes some pleasure, but when it accumulates over time it destroys all possibilities of growth."

The budget also states that 2016 will end with a 1.5 percent contraction in consumption and investment.

The government predictions for 2017 are optimistic, though, envisioning a growth of 3.5 percent in the Gross Domestic Product, an increase of 3.5 percent in consumption, a 14.4 percent increase in investment, an increase of 7.7 percent in exports and a 9.8 percent increase in imports.

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