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  • Wine bottles on discount in Argentina.

    Wine bottles on discount in Argentina. | Photo: Reuters

Published 8 November 2017

The wine-industry has hurt in the past year under Macri's presidency, with production costs rising 47 percent.

Argentine wine producers are slamming Macri's proposed tax reforms as potentially crushing their export revenues.

Macri Says Argentina to Face Sweeping Tax, Education and Labor Reforms

The proposed reforms, which have been met with outcry from labor unions and social movements, would also include among them a tax on Argentina's wine, which has traditionally been tax-free in the country as a way of promoting the important industry.

With over two-thirds of Argentina's wine being consumed locally, winery owners say that the tax would reduce their cost advantage in the domestic market and destroy their competitive edge in exports.

The tax-reforms are aimed to be “business friendly,” and include a host of corporate tax cuts, while hiking taxes on local industries and consumption.

Wine producers were initially optimistic that Macri would be friendly to their industry, which is world-famous for its rich Malbecs, but they have not found the support they sought in the right-wing president's year-long campaign to reinstate neoliberal reforms in the country.

“This is an industry the government should help to grow abroad. Nobody can do Malbec better than us,” Esteban Baigun, a wine producer said.

Baigun said that the cost of production materials and shipments have risen by 47 percent in the past year. The year has been one of the most difficult for the industry in recent history.

Argentina is the world's 6th most prolific producer of wine and the 10th highest exporter.

The South American country has seen mass price-hikes across key industries, harming workers and local businesses alike. The past year has seen a 500 percent price increase for electricity and 300 percent for natural gas. Transportation in some areas has risen 100 percent.

In spite of widespread strikes held by unions across the country, Macri still insists that “we need to make many reforms.”

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