Incessant Corruption in Argentina: An Incalculable Cost

Corruption has been a deep-rooted problem in Argentine society for decades. Over the years, this scourge has affected not only the country’s image internationally, but also the lives of its citizens and the economy in general.

Let us explore the serious situation of corruption in Argentina, analyzing its consequences and the efforts needed to combat it.

Degradation of Corruption

Corruption in Argentina has reached worrying levels, as evidenced by Transparency International reports. In the last report, the country obtained a score of only 35 points out of 100, placing it far below neighboring countries such as Uruguay and Chile.

These values reveal a significant degradation that took place during the Kirchner couple’s administration.

Under the leadership of Cristina Kirchner, corruption in public works reached Dantesque dimensions. These acts of corruption were widely documented and proven by the justice system, and even acknowledged by the businessmen involved.

Unfortunately, corruption has resurfaced during the administration of Alberto Fernández, evidencing a continuity in the Kirchnerist matrix and an aggravation of state interventionism.

Corruption Actors

It is important to highlight that corruption always involves two actors: corrupt officials and part of the local business community. The historical relationship between Kirchnerism and corruption has exposed this worrying connection. However, the indifference that Argentine society has sometimes shown towards this phenomenon is also alarming.

The lack of a broad social condemnation has resulted in a condescending Justice and, in some cases, associated with corruption itself. This represents a challenge for the legal security required by investors and savers.

In order to effectively combat corruption, it is essential that citizens understand that this scourge not only degrades fundamental principles, but also materially affects everyone, especially those who have the least.

Material Cost of Corruption

The damage caused by corruption goes far beyond the nominal value of ill-gotten funds. Decisions made by officials motivated by bribes not only entail an economic cost to taxpayers, but also lead to measures that are inconvenient or even harmful to the community at large.

For many years, cost overruns and deficiencies in the quality of public works and services have been experienced.

In addition, countries affected by corruption become unattractive to foreign investment. International companies and funds subject to strict laws avoid investing in countries with high levels of corruption.

That is why the fight against corrupt practices has become a priority in the developed world, where compliance and business ethics are at the center of corporate agendas.

Fighting Corruption

To move towards an open and competitive society, Argentina must leave its corporate past behind and adopt concrete measures to fight corruption. The new government led by Javier Milei has the challenge of promoting an Argentina with freedom to work, produce and trade.

This implies opening the economy to the outside world, trade union freedom and the repeal of excessive regulations.

It is vitally important that the business and union sectors abandon the corporate habit of capturing the State for their own benefit. The acceptance of corruption by these economic actors is an obstacle to the country’s development and perpetuates a corrupt system that affects all Argentines.

Human Cost of Corruption

Undoubtedly, corruption has an incalculable human cost. Beyond economic estimates based on the percentage of government contracts, it is impossible to measure the suffering and lost opportunities that result from corruption. Corruption cases involve not only the diversion of public funds, but also the weakening of democratic institutions and the erosion of citizen confidence.

It is a fact that corruption impedes economic growth and job creation. It especially affects the most vulnerable sectors of society, which have the least resources to deal with the cost overruns and deficiencies caused by corruption.

It is essential that Argentine society unite in the fight against corruption and demand transparency and accountability from its rulers.

Conclusions

Corruption in Argentina is a long-standing problem that has seriously damaged the country. The degradation that occurred during the Kirchner couple’s administration is evidence of a corrupt matrix that has affected not only the economy, but also the confidence of citizens and the country’s international image.

Overcoming this challenge requires a firm commitment from the authorities and an Argentine society that rejects corruption in all its forms. Transparency, accountability and the effective application of justice are key elements in laying the foundations for a more just and prosperous society.

The fight against corruption is not only the responsibility of the government, but of all citizens. By demanding transparency and ethics in public administration, we are building a better future for all Argentines. Corruption has an incalculable cost, but together we can put an end to it and build a more just and prosperous country.