Mercado Libre demands clear rules to invest again in Argentina

Mercado Libre demands clear rules to invest again in Argentina

The president of Free market (MeLi), Juan Martin de la Serna, defended the role of the knowledge economy in the growth of Argentina. But he maintained that despite its relevance, the sector does not have the necessary conditions for its development. Based on this diagnosis, he justified the investment decisions that the company has been making in recent years, which prioritized other countries in the region before Argentina.

During a speech that he offered yesterday at the forum organized by the Council of the Americas and the Chamber of Commerce and Services, which was attended by Ámbito, the CEO of the ecommerce platform founded by Marcos Galperin highlighted that the economic context in which the country is experiencing “ It led us to invest billions of dollars in other countries, although we would have loved to do it in Argentina”.

And he added: “When the conditions are not right and companies have other investment alternatives in other countries, capital flees and will not take unnecessary risks if there are countries that do things better and offer better conditions to invest.”

He also said that “it is a pity what is happening, but these conditions in the country have forced us to make investments in other countries, although our expectation is that at some point we will be able to return to what it was a few years ago.”

He recalled that in 2019 Mercado Libre installed its distribution center in Argentina, but admitted that capacity in the country did not expand at the same rate as in other countries. “We have developed more than 1.8 million square meters with an investment of billions of dollars in other countries and we would have loved to do it in Argentina,” he added.

In this sense, De la Serna expressed his desire that the future president who emerges from the October elections improves the conditions for companies that “risk” their capital in the country. “We need clear, concrete and agreed rules, because we have the opportunity to go back to being what we were,” he stated.

He also referred to the difficulties the company faces in hiring Argentine talent, a task that has become even more complicated lately: “There are countries that in recent years have had more consistent policies, with a more stable economy and strong support for technology and the development of professionals, who have done things better than us and make it easier to hire programmers today, for example, in Colombia than in Argentina”.

“Before the pandemic there were a total of more than 9,500 employees at Mercado Libre, and currently we are 48,000. But before, 51% of these people worked in Argentina and instead now only 20% of the staff work here. The rest we hire in other countries and not in Argentina, ”he added.

De la Serna had started his presentation at the business forum by highlighting that in Argentina “the knowledge economy generated exports for US$7.8 billion in 2022 and became the fourth largest export complex in the country, with fundamental strategic importance.”

Source: Ambito

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