Argentina’s Congress Starts Debating Milei’s Reform Bill

(Bloomberg) — Argentina’s congress has started debating a package of wide-ranging economic and government reforms proposed by President Javier Milei to shore up public accounts and reduce the presence of the state in the economy.

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The so-called omnibus bill was being discussed by members of the general, budget and constitutional committees Tuesday night. It is expected to go to a vote after that, according to a legislative agenda seen by Bloomberg News.

Milei’s party, which has spent the day in negotiations with governors and house representatives, estimates the proposal will obtain the simple majority of votes needed to be approved by the committees, according to a person familiar with the matter.

A vote on the floor of the lower house is expected for Thursday, one day after labor movements are set to organize a national strike against Milei’s austerity measures.

Read More: Milei Gets Pragmatic as Hostile Congress Forces Him to Negotiate

The president’s nascent libertarian party has about 15% of the seats in the lower house and 10% in the Senate, while Peronism and the left-wing parties have just under half of the votes in each chamber. Milei counts on the support of the pro-business PRO party and more moderate members of two other political groups — Union Civica Radical and Hacemos por Nuestro Pais — to push through his reforms.

(Updates first two paragraphs with beginning of debate in congressional committees.)

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