Argentine farmers’ organisations, under the umbrella Liaison Board, announced a national strike on Tuesday, cancelling trade in certain products to protest against national government policies.
The suspension began at midnight on Tuesday and will end a week later on June 12th. The action is in protest against the land reform bill and tax hike in Buenos Aires province, amongst other issues.
On May 31st Buenos Aires governor Daniel Scioli signed a decree that promised to revaluate rural land in the province.
Eduardo Buzzi, head of Agrarian Federation of Argentina, explained that “costs, particularly taxes, have increased non-stop for farmers and thus our incomes have been diminished.” He added, “something is going very wrong in Argentina’s farms, which is why we are sending this wake-up call … We are in bad shape and getting worse.”
Other difficulties identified by the farming organisations include trade restrictions, limits to exports, destruction of markets and a lack of profit in dairy farming.
The national strike is an extension of the ban on commercial activities in the province of Buenos Aires, a direct response to the decree signed by local parliament.
Pickets have surfaced on several of Argentina’s main highways in farming territories and shipments of livestock are very low.
Governor Scioli told the farmers of the province of Buenos Aires he is prepared to review the legislation but has demanded that the organisations cease their protests.