Argentina’s President-elect Javier Milei said in an X post Friday that the closure of the nation’s central bank is “non negotiable.”
Milei’s comments came in response to what he deemed “false rumors” that he was backing down on the aggressive move, which was a central campaign promise. “”Regarding the President-elect’s agenda, this afternoon he will have a telephone conversation with the president of South Korea, Yoon Suk-yeol,” Milei’s team said the press release.
“On the other hand, given the false rumors spread, we wish to clarify that the closure of the Central Bank of the Argentine Republic (BCRA) is not a negotiable matter.”
Milei campaigned as a libertarian who has vowed to curtail Argentina’s welfare state and make significant cuts to government bureaucracy. The statement added that economist Osvaldo Giordano has been tapped to head Argentina’s social security administration ANSES, which is expected to be an important post given Milei’s agenda.
In a recent interview, Milei referred to the central bank as “one of the greatest thieves of all time.”
“I think there’s a previous discussion about dollarization. Actually, strictly speaking, it’s to get rid of the central bank. The dollarization is an instrumental issue at the end of the day,” he said.
“There are four argumentative axes. One has to do with a moral issue, which is that stealing is wrong, and is nothing more or less than a swindle by politicians against good people. Therefore, let’s say, if we consider that stealing is wrong, one of the greatest thieves in the history of mankind is the central bank.”
Milei may face difficulty in realizing his ambitious agenda, which includes dollarizing the economy, shuttering the central bank and privatizing state companies. His libertarian coalition has a limited number of seats in congress, meaning Milei will need to rely on more mainstream conservative factions who played a key role in his victory.