May 20, 2022 6:32 am

“The robbery of the century”: what the State keeps from the rent of the field

These days marks a new anniversary of that January 13, 2006, in which the robbery of a bank branch occurred and that, due to the amount stolen (19 million dollars) was called “The robbery of the century”.

Using that amount in that event, We cannot catalog or describe in a better way what has been happening during these years with the money that has been taken from the agricultural producer in tax matters. And naturally you have to put the (bad calls) withholding first. A true aberration that all politics and society in general take for something natural, of course, because they take the other out.

But few have noticed the collateral damage caused by export withholdings since they, as their name indicates, should affect the tons of product that is exported. But, surprise: it is not like that. They are also discounted from the price of the tons that are not exported and that are consumed in the country. of all agricultural products. To take examples, wheat and corn.

That is to say, the price is formed on the basis of export calculation, from which withholdings are deducted and that same price is the one that governs for the internal market, with what the producers transfer part of their income to the industries that transform them locally.

Many hundreds of millions of dollars that are genuinely from the agricultural producer and that could be reinvested in the sector are “sneaked” for this reason and end up in the respective industries. To put it plainly: The countryside subsidizes the poultry, pork, and wheat milling industries in not insignificant amounts. In addition, this subsidy already works as a “decoupling” from the international market of no less than 12% of the price. What more decoupling do you want?

All this with the endorsement of the State, which publishes daily the reference prices for each product (called “theoretical FAS”) based on an export market, when in truth it should publish a price for export and another for the domestic market.

Strictly speaking, It would not be necessary for the State to publish anything if it were not for the festival of exchange rates (according to the time we take) that enable the maneuvers of over/under-invoicing of exporters/importers. In any case, these prices that are published are not necessarily met either, since it is common for producers to be paid somewhat less according to the whim of exporters or industrialists. Added to this is the gap produced by the exchange gap, which means that our producers receive much less than half of the (real) dollars that our competitors receive.

So, we have: the exchange rate gap, plus the -unconstitutional- withholdings, plus the rest of the taxes that, in the case of agriculture, a recent study by the FADA Foundation estimates that the State keeps 63% of the income from the field, to which should be added the hidden subsidy to industries mentioned above.

We are talking about more than 70%. Something clearly inequitable. Now, not happy with this, from the Executive Power they promote a trust to supposedly help the industries to sell cheaper to the “table of the Argentines” Soup again: even less income for the producer!

Who says that if the industries joined the countryside defending their claims and demanding State policies in favor of production and investment, instead of accepting failed formulas from the Government, the final price of the products would not be lower than the current one?

On the other hand, it must be clear that the countryside is not responsible for the vertical drop in the purchasing power of wages in our country. There is nothing more to say. This is absolutely confiscatory and therefore unconstitutional. There is only one path ahead and that is to resort to Justice. Here and now. The law assists us.

The author is a farmer

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