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Martín Lousteau

Martín Lousteau
President of the National Committee of the Radical Civic Union
Assumed office
17 December 2023
Preceded byGerardo Morales
National Senator
Assumed office
10 December 2019
ConstituencyCity of Buenos Aires
National Deputy
In office
10 December 2013 – 10 December 2019
ConstituencyCity of Buenos Aires
Argentine Ambassador to the United States
In office
10 December 2015 – 3 April 2017
PresidentMauricio Macri
Preceded byCecilia Nahón
Succeeded byFernando Oris de Roa
Minister of Economy and Production
In office
10 December 2007 – 24 April 2008
PresidentCristina Fernández de Kirchner
Preceded byMiguel Gustavo Peirano
Succeeded byCarlos Rafael Fernández
President of the Bank of the Province of Buenos Aires
In office
28 December 2005 – 9 December 2007
GovernorFelipe Sola
Preceded byJorge Sarghini
Succeeded byGuillermo Francos
Minister of Production of Buenos Aires
In office
12 August 2005 – 28 December 2007
GovernorFelipe Sola
Preceded byGustavo Lopetegui
Succeeded byDébora Giorgi
Personal details
Born (1970-12-08) 8 December 1970 (age 53)
Buenos Aires, Argentina
Political partyRadical Civic Union (2017–present)[1]
Independent (2005–2017)
Other political
affiliations
Front for Victory (2007–2008)
Broad Front UNEN (2013–2015)
Evolution (2015–2019)
Juntos por el Cambio (2019–present)
Spouse
(m. 2011)
ChildrenGaspar Lousteau (b. 2013)
Alma materUniversity of San Andrés
London School of Economics
OccupationEconomist

Martín Lousteau (born 8 December 1970) is an Argentine economist and politician of the Radical Civic Union (UCR) . He is National Senator for Buenos Aires. Since 2023, he has been President of the UCR National Committee.

He was Minister of Economy under the administration of Cristina Fernández de Kirchner, from December 2007 to April 2008. At the age of 37, he was the youngest person to occupy this office in more than five decades.[2]

Lousteau served as the Argentine Ambassador to the United States from 2015 to 2017.[3] In 2017, Lousteau joined the UCR but was not part of Cambiemos in the Argentine Congress.[4]

From 2013 to 2019, he was a National Deputy, representing Buenos Aires. He resigned his bench at the Chamber of Deputies to be sworn in as Senator on 10 December 2019.[5]

Early career

Lousteau was born in Buenos Aires to Guillermo Lousteau Heguy and Mabel Gellón. He graduated from Colegio Nacional de Buenos Aires. He is a Licentiate in Economics (graduated summa cum laude from the Universidad de San Andrés), and a Master of Science in Economics (at the London School of Economics). He taught as a postgraduate professor at the Universidad Torcuato Di Tella, and as graduate professor at the Universidad de San Andrés.[6]

He is the author of Sin Atajos (No Shortcuts, 2005), a history of Argentina's economic crises, with Javier González Fraga;[7] and Hacia un Federalismo Solidario (Towards a Cooperative Federalism), as well as specialized works and journalistic articles that have been published in Argentina and abroad. Lousteau had also been a tennis instructor (which he quit because of an injury), and worked as a war correspondent in Afghanistan for the magazines El Planeta Urbano and La Razón before the September 11 attacks.[8]

Lousteau served as chief economist and later director of APL Economía, a consulting firm founded by former Central Bank President Alfonso Prat-Gay, and went on to hold various public offices as well as positions in the private sector. He was appointed Adviser to the President of the Central Bank of Argentina in 2003, for whom he designed a bank matching scheme for the payment of the discount window loans; and served in the Central Bank's Committee on Monetary Policy until 2004). He was appointed by Governor Felipe Solá as Minister of Production of Buenos Aires Province in 2005, and late that year was named Chairman of the Bank of the Province of Buenos Aires and of its parent company, the BAPRO Group, where he served from 2005 until his designation as Economy Minister in December 2007. He later co-founded a business consulting firm, LCG, with Gastón Rossi.[6]

Minister of Economy

Lousteau making his case for higher oilseed export taxes in an April 2008 press conference. The resulting conflict with the nation's agricultural sector dominated his brief tenure as Economy Minister.

Lousteau was the first minister of economy of Cristina Fernández de Kirchner. There was a dispute in the cabinet at the time between Julio de Vido, Ricardo Jaime and Guillermo Moreno, and Alberto Fernández, Graciela Ocaña, Jorge Taiana and Carlos Tomada. Lousteau sided with Alberto Fernández, as he did not share the economic views of De Vido and Moreno. Fernández had promised him that both of them would be removed from government in a short time.[9] Lousteau wrote a report for the president on the figures of the national economy, praising several aspects of the tenure of Néstor Kirchner, but warning about the growing inflation. This report was dismissed by Néstor Kirchner, who did not have an actual office but remained an influential figure. He also proposed to gradually reduce the subsidies to energy consumption, to eventually abandon the fixed price system established during the 2001 crisis. Cristina Kirchner did not support his proposal.[10]

The salient feature of his tenure was the controversy surrounding his decision to increase soybean export taxes, which were previously fixed at 35%, and to have them fluctuate in line with global prices for the crop.[11] This has been claimed as the major cause of the protests in the Argentine countryside which took place in early 2008.[12] Lousteau was heavily involved in talks with farmers' leaders but was later sidelined.[13]

Lousteau was rumored as early as two months into his tenure to have declared his intention to resign as a result of disputes with fellow ministers, particularly Commerce Secretary Guillermo Moreno.[14] He denied he would resign; but there was nevertheless continued speculation on his resignation or replacement in the wake of the agrarian crisis.[15] Lousteau resigned on 24 April 2008, with the tax agency chief Carlos Fernández replacing him.[16]

Lousteau with Cristina Fernandez de Kirchner

According to The Wall Street Journal, his brief tenure was clouded from the outset by interference from former President Néstor Kirchner's allies. Lousteau's policy initiatives often seemed to be eclipsed by those of Commerce Secretary Guillermo Moreno, a Kirchner loyalist described as "the administration's price policeman."[17]

Later work

Following his dismissal Lousteau contributed a weekly opinion column for the conservative daily La Nación and published two best-selling books on economic theory and history, Economía 3-D (2011) and Otra vuelta a la economía (2012). He received a Yale World Fellowship in 2012.[18]

Politics in Buenos Aires

Martín Lousteau canvassing in Buenos Aires during his 2015 mayoral run.

Lousteau joined the UNEN coalition, led by the centrist UCR, and was nominated to their City of Buenos Aires party list for Congress in the 2013 mid-term elections.[19] He was one of five UNEN candidates elected to Congress for the City of Buenos Aires; but ongoing differences with caucus leader Elisa Carrió led Lousteau to form his own faction (Suma + UNEN), joined by UNEN Congressmen relying in grassroots action in the UCR.[20][21]

He ran for mayor in 2015 backed by centre-left coalition called ECO (Energía Ciudadana Organizada), and was narrowly defeated by Horacio Rodríguez Larreta.[22] In these elections, PRO was stronger in wealthier northern Buenos Aires, while ECO was stronger in the southern, poorer neighborhoods of the city.[23][24]

He was appointed ambassador of Argentina to the United States by president Mauricio Macri in 2016, but he resigned the following year to run for National Deputy in the 2017 Argentine mid-term elections.[25]

Lousteau takes over as senator, with Carlos Menem on the left

In 2017 mid-term elections, Lousteau ran heading the Evolución, which included the Radical Civic Union and the Socialist Party. Despite coming in third with 12.3% of the vote, he and Carla Carrizo became National Deputies due to Argentina's proportional representation electoral system.[citation needed]

Personal life

Martín Lousteau married television actress Carla Peterson in New Haven, Connecticut, in September 2011, and the couple had a son in January 2013, Gaspar Lousteau.[26]

Written books

  • Hacia un federalismo solidario (2003)
  • Sin atajos (2005)
  • Economía 3D: una nueva dimension para tus preguntas de siempre (2011)
  • Otra vuelta a la economía (2012)
  • Debajo del agua (2019)

References

  1. ^ Guadalupe, Alan Soria (6 December 2017). "Martín Lousteau se afilió a la UCR y confirmó que no formará parte de Cambiemos en el Congreso". La Nación.
  2. ^ "¿Quién es Martín Lousteau, el nuevo ministro de Economía?". Minuto Uno. 14 November 2007.
  3. ^ "Martín Lousteau renunció a la embajada en EE.UU.:"Quiero ser candidato en la Ciudad"". Clarín (in Spanish). 4 April 2017. Retrieved 12 August 2018.
  4. ^ Guadalupe, Alan Soria (6 December 2017). "Martín Lousteau se afilió a la UCR y confirmó que no formará parte de Cambiemos en el Congreso". La Nación.
  5. ^ "Martín Lousteau | AS/COA". www.as-coa.org. Retrieved 4 October 2023.
  6. ^ a b "About Us". LCG S.A. Archived from the original on 4 March 2016. Retrieved 24 March 2014.
  7. ^ Javier González Fraga; Martín Lousteau (2005). Sin atajos: de la ciclotimia a la madurez del desarrollo. Temas Grupo Editorial. ISBN 978-950-9445-12-3.
  8. ^ "Martín Lousteau". Retrieved 5 July 2015.
  9. ^ Lanata, p. 13
  10. ^ Lanata, p. 15
  11. ^ Argentina's Economy Minister Is Under Fire Over Soybean Tax. Wall Street Journal, 7 April 2008
  12. ^ "Cristina's Argentine Honeymoon Ends". TIME.com. 2 April 2008. Archived from the original on 5 April 2008. Retrieved 5 July 2015.
  13. ^ "Lousteau, fuera de la negociación". 17 April 2008. Retrieved 5 July 2015.
  14. ^ "Lousteau: "No voy a renunciar"". 27 March 2008. Retrieved 5 July 2015.
  15. ^ "Lousteau cultiva bajo perfil, pero cosecha rumores de recambio". 22 April 2008. Retrieved 5 July 2015.
  16. ^ "BBC NEWS - Business - Argentina's economy chief quits". BBC News. 25 April 2008. Retrieved 5 July 2015.
  17. ^ New Argentine Economy Chief to Stay Course. Wall Street Journal, 26 April 2008
  18. ^ "Martín Lousteau". Yale World Fellows.
  19. ^ "Martín Lousteau fue presentado oficialmente por Rofolfo Terragno como candidato a diputado". La Nación. 11 June 2013.
  20. ^ "Carrió y Lousteau se desUNEN en bloques en Diputados". Perfil. 3 December 2013.
  21. ^ "Bloques". Honorable Cámara de Diputados de la Nación. Archived from the original on 24 March 2014.
  22. ^ "Horacio Rodríguez Larreta ganó el ballottage por una ajustada diferencia" [Horacio Rodríguez Larreta won the ballotage by a short difference] (in Spanish). La Nación. 19 July 2015. Retrieved 14 November 2016.
  23. ^ Mapa de resultados ballottage Archived 23 July 2015 at the Wayback Machine – La Nacion, 19 July 2015.
  24. ^ "PRO's Rodriguez Larreta elected Buenos Aires city mayor in tight runoff". Archived from the original on 22 October 2017. Retrieved 14 June 2017.
  25. ^ "Ya es oficial la designación de Martín Lousteau como embajador en Estados Unidos" [The designation of Martín Lousteau as ambassador to the United States is now official] (in Spanish). La Nación. 18 January 2016. Retrieved 14 November 2016.
  26. ^ "Casamiento expres: boda secreta de Carla Peterson y Martín Lousteau". Diario Popular. 1 October 2012.

Bibliography

Diplomatic posts Preceded byCecilia Nahón Argentine Ambassador to the United States 2015–2017 Succeeded byFernando Oris de Roa Political offices Preceded byMiguel Peirano Minister of Economy 2007–2008 Succeeded byCarlos Fernández Party political offices Preceded byGerardo Morales President of the National Committee of the Radical Civic Union 2023–present Incumbent
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Martín Lousteau
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