The Minister of Productive Development, Matías Kulfas, affirmed today that the trust to subsidize the price of wheat flour, after the international rise that it had after the outbreak of the war between Russia and Ukraine, will allow prices to be brought back to February values. of noodles, bread and flour, and announced that the Secretary of Commerce works together with supermarkets and food producers to define “in 24 hours” which products of a food basket return to the prices they had between March 8 and 10.
At the same time, he announced that a “credit line for $8,000 million at a subsidized rate for the milling industry” will be launched with the aim that the mills speed up the purchase of wheat to produce flour but avoid “a massive transfer of prices to the table of the Argentines.
“The decision to form the trust to support the price of wheat is part of an international scenario of turbulence,” Kulfas said at a press conference at the portfolio’s headquarters, in which he specified that the aim is to compensate the sector so that flour producers have the product at February prices, since “doing nothing is validating that increases in the value of wheat are transferred to the price of key products on the table of Argentines”, when explaining the measures adopted to contain inflation.
In that sense, he explained that “if there is no compensation measure, the most expensive wheat means more expensive bread, flour and noodles, products that make up the Argentine table.”
The trust will be funded with the increase of two percentage points of withholdings that apply to soybean meal and oil exports announced last Saturday by the Minister of Agriculture, Livestock and Fisheries, Julián Domínguez, he specified.
“The flour mills are going to be compensated so that they have a compensation equal to the price they had in February and ensure that bread and other products; it is a mechanism to prevent this shock in the price of wheat from affecting the table of the Argentinians,” said Kulfas, while affirming that “wheat producers are not going to suffer any damage”
On the other hand, referring to the meeting held this morning with leaders of the Coordination of the Food Products Industries (Copal) and the association of supermarkets and wholesale businesses, he said that it was “constructive” although “it had some moments of tension because there was a kind of denial” on the part of businessmen about “speculative” increases in recent days.
“In 24 hours it will be clarified what is the responsibility of the industry and intermediaries and the prices that have been adopted in an unjustified manner have to be rolled back to March 8 or 10, which have to do with the Care Price schemes implemented by the Secretary of Domestic Trade,” he assured.
“Later there were much more important increases and that we are not willing to validate, that is why we also told them that all the prices increased after that date should be rolled back and, if there was a difference, that it be duly explained and that is why these 24 hours of impasse to continue talking,” he added.
Lastly, he said that the government “is committed to these dialogues ending fruitfully” but that “if there were to be any shortages, we will not hesitate to apply the Supply Law as we have done on other occasions.”