Argentina's treasury minister resigns, senior official says

Argentina's treasury minister, Nicolás Dujovne, resigned Saturday and will be replaced by the economy minister of the country's most populous state, a senior official in the presidential office said.


 In this file photo taken on April 17, 2019 Argentinian Economy Minister, Nicolas Dujovne, talks during a press conference at the presidential residence in Olivos, Buenos Aires. (Photo: AFP)

The resignation came three days after President Nicolas Macri announced his conservative administration is temporarily increasing the minimum wage, reducing payroll taxes and implementing other steps to help Argentine workers as the country struggles to overcome sizzling inflation, high unemployment and other economic problems.

Macri acted after a leftist presidential slate that includes his predecessor, Cristina Fernández, turned in a powerful showing last Sunday in primary voting for candidates going into October general elections. Macri's slate did poorly, and the already weak Argentine peso slumped and stock prices fell sharply as investors reacted in worry about the vote results.

In his resignation letter, Dujovne reportedly says the government needs to make "a significant overhaul in the economic area." He says the administration made strides in reducing the government's deficit and reducing taxes, but adds that "we undoubtedly made mistakes."

The presidency official, who agreed to confirm the resignation only if not quoted by name, said Dujovne would be replaced by Hernán Lacunza, the economy minister for Buenos Aires province. Lacunza previously was general manager of the Central Bank.