Famines Update

The Worst Drought in 30 Years Adds to Argentina’s Economic Woes

Blog Note Preface: And great earthquakes shall be in diverse places, and famines, and pestilences; and fearful sights and great signs shall there be from heaven. (Luke 21:11). Jesus is giving a series of prophecies about what to look for as the age of grace comes to a close. This verse from Luke is one of many such prophecies from throughout the Bible. 2017 was the worst year in recorded history for the intensity, frequency, severity, duration and occurrence of a large number of severe natural disasters worldwide. Earthquakes, volcanoes, hurricanes, typhoons, cyclones, torrential flooding, unprecedented wildfires in unusual places, devastating droughts, excessive/scorching heat setting records everywhere, record snowfalls in Europe and Russia. Snow in the Arabia. This list can go on. Most studied eschatologists believe these ‘fearful sights’ and massive natural disasters are all part of the ‘CONVERGENCE’ of signs that this Biblical and prophetic age is closing. Most people who study prophecy are familiar with the routine reference(s) made that these things will be like a woman having labor pains that occur in greater severity, frequency and occurrence prior to giving birth. End of note.

The Worst Drought in 30 Years Adds to Argentina’s Economic Woes

By Jonathan Gilbert

February 28, 2018, 5:00 AM EST. Bloomberg.

Argentine President Mauricio Macri was banking on a near-record soybean crop to drive economic growth of 3.5 percent this year and extend the nation’s recovery.

Instead, this year’s drought, on course to be the worst in 30 years, has farmers bracing for the poorest harvest since 2009. It’s an unwanted surprise for a government with a daunting list of tasks that already includes taming inflation, closing the fiscal gap and boosting exports. The government may need to trim its forecast for gross domestic product in 2018 if dryness persists this week, Guido Sandleris, the chief adviser at the Treasury Ministry, said on Monday. No significant rain is predicted.

“This will probably have a very serious impact on the economy, exports and tax collection,” said Emilce Terre, chief economist at the Rosario Board of Trade. “Crops are Argentina’s biggest export and it needs the dollars to pay for imports and service debt.” Seven of 10 firms surveyed by Amilcar Collante, an analyst at La Plata-based economic research center CeSur, are cutting 2018 growth projections because of the drought. The average GDP estimate has dropped to 2.5 percent from 2.9 percent last month.

Signs are piling up that the drought may be worse than what farmers saw on their parched fields in 2009. Soybean and corn shipments account for 36 percent of total exports and the government taxes the former. By this time in 2009 more rain had fallen in much of the Pampas, according to government maps published Monday. That year, analysts predicted a soy crop of 46.2 million metric tons. By the end of the harvest, farmers had collected just 39.9 million, a record low. The slump dragged the economy into a recession. The Buenos Aires Grain Exchange has cut its soy estimate to 47 million tons for 2018 and the bourse will likely have to reduce it even further, said Esteban Copati, the chief estimates analyst. Economists are starting to follow suit with GDP forecasts.

If crop estimates continue dropping, “this is going to be bad,” said Ivan Ordonez, an independent economist who’s a consultant to farm supply companies. “We could be looking at a repeat of 2009.”

— With assistance by Jorgelina Do Rosario, and Ignacio Olivera Doll

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