Why Argentina’s New President Wants the U.S. Dollar

By: Anneken Tappe · November 21, 2023 · Reading Time: 2 minutes

Presidential Plans

Argentina’s President-elect Javier Milei is no fan of the peso. He wants to ditch his nation’s currency for the U.S. dollar to leave economic upheaval behind. Milei also wants to strip Argentina’s central bank from its powers.

The South American country is no stranger to financial turmoil, having previously defaulted on its debt, and running triple digit inflation. So what could the good old greenback do?

Why Dollarization?

Switching to the U.S. dollar – a process known as dollarization – has historically helped certain countries achieve greater economic stability. Because local central banks aren’t able to print U.S. dollars, it can avoid hyperinflation, for example.

If Milei succeeds, Argentina would join Ecuador, El Salvador, and Panama in using the U.S. dollar.

Potential Pitfalls

While dollarization can be a step in the right direction, it’s not a panacea that will instantly cure Argentina’s economic struggles.

For one, economists doubt that Argentina has the funds to actually complete such a project. Also, without the security of its own currency and central bank, Buenos Aires would be much more exposed to macroeconomic threats from swings in export prices and commodities.

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