Argentine government officials arranged for $2.3bn in loans to aid drought-stricken farmers using funds provided by banks on 26th January.
The funding announcement comes on the tails of another $500m in loan money that Agriculture Minister Norberto Yauhar granted as part of the Agricultural Emergency fund.
A drought has struck several countries in South America including Argentina, and Argentina Agrarian Federation president Eduardo Buzzi said the loans include $1.5bn coming from the Banco Nación and $800m from the Banco Provincia de Buenos Aires.
“This will be insufficient because the losses are much greater,” Buzzi said, according to La Información.
In its 26th January survey, the Buenos Aires Grain Exchange stated that although recent rains will help farmers, they won’t entirely stem the agricultural impacts of drought in the country.
The non-profit civil association released numbers stating that the country’s soybean production is expected to be around 46.2 million tonnes during the 2011/12 farming year. While last weekend’s rain did help push the number up, the estimate is still below last year’s harvest of 49.2 million tonnes.
“Both seasons experienced extreme conditions during December, with the difference that the 2010/11 campaign managed to catch up at the end of January under better conditions, with more frequent rains, more even distribution and more millimetres of water,” the report said.
Argentina is one of the world’s leading producers of soybean.
The country’s corn – another product that Argentina excels at exporting – is also at risk. The report noted that the rains during the last seven days gave relief to most productive areas of our country, but other were left dry.
“Just the southwest of Córdoba, the northeast San Luis and the western part of Santiago del Estero have had low rainfall to none, complicating the summer crop conditions,” the report noted.