Learning English - Words in the News
06 August, 2004 - Published 12:28 GMT
Argentina’s public spending bill
Argentina has signed into law a crucial bill designed to control public spending by the country's national and provincial governments. The new bill may help Argentina to secure a 13 billion dollar loan deal with the International Monetary Fund. This report from Elliot Gotkine:
When the IMF signed a three year loan deal with Argentina last September, it came with strings attached. One of these was to rein in public spending from Argentina's twenty-four provinces whose profligacy contributed to the country's economic crisis and debt default some two and a half years ago.
The new fiscal responsibility law means that local governments won't be able to increase public spending by any more than the rate of economic growth. And in a bid to prevent Argentina's provinces from running up too much debt, only a maximum of fifteen percent of their public spending will be able to come from borrowings. Any provinces breaching these limits could face financial penalties.
Some opponents of the bill said their government has bowed to pressure from the IMF at the expense of Argentina. Others say the law doesn't go far enough because it doesn't force the provinces to reduce public spending when the economy shrinks.
with strings attached
to rein in
in a bid