On a residential street corner in Buenos Aires, Van Koning Market sells imported beers to the city’s well-heeled. Since it opened in June last year costs have soared. The peso has plummeted, meaning wholesale prices have shot up.
Frustratingly for president Macri, Argentina’s travails are, in part, a consequence of his efforts to put the economy on a firmer footing.
Inflation is running at 26%; the reduction of government subsidies means the monthly electricity bill has risen from 700 pesos to 4,000 pesos (US$ 142).
Already losing customers, Sergio Discenza, the manager, is reluctant to raise prices much. “In a normal country this would be a viable business,” he says. “But here everyone is struggling.”
The year started badly for Argentina when the worst drought in 50 years hit