December 29, 2015 / 10:26 PM / 4 years ago

Argentina's Macri scraps corn and wheat export quotas

BUENOS AIRES, Dec 29 (Reuters) - Argentina on Tuesday removed limits on how much corn and wheat the country’s huge farm sector can export, the latest measure aimed at revitalizing agriculture in the grains-producing powerhouse.

The new center-right administration of President Mauricio Macri eliminated taxes on corn, wheat and soy exports earlier this month, making good on a campaign pledge to take steps to encourage agricultural production.

The export quotas had curbed corn and wheat planting and resulted in the overplanting of soy in recent years.

Farmers had pushed the former government of Cristina Fernandez to remove the quotas, but the leftist leader said they were needed to ensure local food needs were met.

Macri has said the former president’s farm policies stifled production.

“It’s necessary to remove all current conditions that go against transparency, simplicity, openness and reason,” the government said in a resolution removing the export quotas.

The government has estimated that the country’s grains production will grow to 130 million tonnes a year during Macri’s first term from the current 100 million tonnes.

Macri, who took office on Dec. 10, has promised free-market solutions to Argentina’s long list of economic woes.

Reporting By Nicolas Misculin; Writing by Mitra Taj; Editing by Peter Cooney

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