Mexican President Andres Manuel Lopez Obrador has appointed Rogelio Ramirez de la OO, an inexperienced public sector adviser, to replace Arturo Herrera, who is being transferred to the country’s central bank.
Accompanied by two officials, Lopez Obrador greets Ramirez de la O video on Wednesday as “Master of Economy. “Experienced, serious.”
Ramirez de la Oo, 72, is the CEO of Ecanal, a Mexican private consultant, and holds a Ph.D. from Cambridge. He was a longtime ally of the president; he was to become finance minister if Lopez Obrador won the 2006-2012 elections.
He turned down invitations to take over the financial portfolio after Lopez Obrador became president in 2018.
Some analysts were skeptical of the election. “He has virtually zero practical experience,” said Eduardo Suarez, Scotiabank’s Latin American Vice President of Economics.
After the announcement, the peso partially weakened. Mexico’s financial markets soar this week after Sunday’s by-elections in Lopez Obrador failed to retain his two-thirds majority In the lower house of Congress, denying him the will to change the constitution.
Ramires de la O is not expected to oppose Lopez Obrador economic visionespecially in the energy sector, where the populist president prefers state oil and utility companies to private investment.
Lopez Obrador reiterated that his priorities will not change. Debts, taxes, energy prices will not rise, “the poor come first”.
This means that “he will have to continue juggling,” said Gabriela Siller, head of economic analysis at Banko. Lopez Obrador cuts costs to the bone սել spends rainy day savings to invest resources in pensions, scholarships և pet infrastructure projects.
However, the Mexican economy is like that jumping from Covid-19 : is expected to grow to և 6.5% this year and 8.5% in 2020.
“If he’s been in the presidency for two and a half years, Rogelio should know the public spending game plan very well,” said Alonso Servera, Credit Suisse’s Latin American chief economist. “He is likely to give the president ideas on the energy sector.”
Herrera said Ramirez de la O’Malley is likely to draw up a budget by September. There is a tax reform that high-ranking government sources say will not include wealth or inheritance taxes.
The current head of the Central Bank, Alejandro Diaz de Leon, is scheduled to step down in December. Lopez Obrador said he had previously announced his replacement to avoid market turmoil.
If approved by the Senate, Herrera, who considers former Federal Reserve Chairman Ben Bernanke one of his most influential figures, would complete the list of non-Banxico members of the central bank board. Lopez Obrador stressed the need for a “moral economist” leader.
Investors in Herrera are well known, but his closeness to the president makes clear his ability to maintain central bank autonomy. He said he expects to remain in his current position for another month.
Diaz de Leon strongly defended himself last year when lawmakers put forward a bill to be passed forced the central bank to absorb dollars that the banks were not able to repatriate.
“I think Herrera has proven to be sensible and has earned the trust of the markets,” said Suarez of Scotiabank. He added. “He will have to work hard to show strong independence from the government.”