Will Argentine Farmers Strike Again?

Another rally of farm groups is scheduled Saturday.

Published on: Aug 22, 2008

The Argentine Agrarian Federation, or FAA, held a rally on Monday protesting the economic hardships being placed on the agriculture sector. Eduardo Buzzi, the group's leader, says that just because the farmers strike earlier this year was successful in getting the sliding scale export tax on soybeans repealed doesn't mean problems for the farm sector are over. Farm Progress market analyst Arlan Suderman agrees.

"They certainly gained some courage from their action of being able to defeat the increase in the export tax," Suderman says. "But keep in mind the export tax is still 35%, which is a huge tax on soybean production."

Suderman says Argentina suffers from a lack of solid economic policy. They are taxing their citizens heavily and their economy continues to struggle which has resulted in high fertilizer prices, high land rents, and very erratic currency exchange rates.

"Argentina could be a major world player in the global soybean market but it continues to punish farmers for growing soybeans to the benefit of U.S. farmers," Suderman says. "The one thing that could really give a boost to their economy, they tax it heavily. So there are a lot of problems facing the Argentine farmer by way of poor government economic policy."

Buzzi says farmers are running out of patience with the government and whether or not farmers strike depends on what happens this week. The Argentine Rural Society, the Argentine Rural Confederation and Coninagro will join FAA this Saturday for a joint farmer rally.