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Argentine workers hold large-scale strike, affecting export production of red shrimp and squid

Recently, workers' strikes have occurred in some parts of Argentina. The province of Chubut, where the fishing port is located, is at the center of economic and political turmoil, which has affected the export of red shrimp and squid.

After taking office, Argentina's new President Javier Milei has been seeking support from Congress and the Legislative Yuan to solve the country's serious inflation problem. With the depreciation of the Argentine peso, the consumption power of residents has declined rapidly, causing widespread dissatisfaction among workers.

According to statistics, Argentina's inflation rate increased by 20.6% month-on-month in January, lower than the 25.5% in December. A large number of workers held large-scale protests and strikes, demanding immediate wage increases. These dissatisfaction has spread to the seafood industry. However, in the context of the global market downturn, it is difficult for processing and export companies to meet workers' demands for wage increases.

An Argentinian red shrimp business leader told UCN: "Ours is at a standstill in production and we hope to reach an agreement as soon as possible to resume economic activity. Workers are rapidly losing purchases, and complaints and requests for wage increases seem logical. The power of trade unions in Argentina It can turn into a large-scale strike within two or three minutes. This time the shock is so big and the impact is so deep that workers' demands cannot be met. This has also prompted the industry to reassess the situation and we are all waiting to see if it is possible to resume production. "

For the Argentine red shrimp industry, the market downturn is an unavoidable reality. Current red shrimp prices are lower than in previous quarters, and challenges such as excess inventory and cheap vannamei shrimp substitutes have severely reduced exporter profit margins. According to industry insiders, global economic uncertainty and declining consumption in major markets such as Europe and the United States, coupled with problems in Russia and China, have resulted in price declines of around 15-20% year-on-year.

"Compared to last year, we have experienced a significant decline in red shrimp prices, even comparable to the low period in August. There are still many stocks of headless shrimp, shelled shrimp and whole shrimp on the market, and the price of vannamei shrimp has dropped. It’s also putting pressure on red shrimp,” the source said.

Another Argentinian red shrimp entrepreneur said: "We are stuck in a cycle of rising costs, falling prices and low demand. I don't expect the (land-frozen) season to resume this year. The fishing season is over, but we still have some We have inventory to sell and there will be no problem in continuing to supply customers.”

"To be honest, we feel very sorry that some things are not entirely up to us, so we are very cautious. We plan to continue to invest in production because there is customer demand and we have to maintain our workforce."

Local media reported that Argentine red shrimp fishing conditions were ideal in December and January, with output higher than in previous years. The fishing season is still continuing, with more than a dozen fishing vessels. However, the sizes are generally small, and there is a shortage of large shrimp (L1) in waters across the country, which complicates marketing efforts.

An Argentinian squid exporter said worker protests were causing delays in unloading and exporting the squid. "Fishing is still going on, but the port of Madryn cannot unload. The fishing boats have to go to the Deseado and Mar del Plata areas to unload. Due to the distance, they have to lose four days of fishing time."

"Strikes are always annoying, but the squid market is good. The Argentine fleet's fishing was relatively good in January, and overall production was higher than last year. But we have to see how long the strike lasts."


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