BUENOS AIRES – Argentine President Mauricio Macri on Friday vetoed an opposition-backed bill aimed at putting the brakes on layoffs for six months.
“In exercise of the constitutional powers I have, I’m going to veto the bill,” Macri said at an event held at a poultry plant in El Jagüel, a town in Buenos Aires province.
On Thursday, Congress passed a bill establishing a 180-day labor emergency, during which time a company must pay double the amount of severance pay when dismissing a worker.
Macri, who took office last December after 12 years of rule by the leftist Peronist party, said at Friday’s ceremony that “those who governed until recently” are now proposing “laws that freeze employment.”
According to the president, the opposition intends to pass legislation to hinder the country’s progress.
He recalled that until recently Cristina Fernandez, who was Argentina’s president from 2007 to 2015, opposed double severance pay.
Macri’s administration denies that there have been massive layoffs and blames Fernandez’s administration for stagnant job creation over the past five years.
He had warned he would veto the bill, saying it would discourage companies from investing and creating new jobs.
Business federations also opposed the bill.
A two-thirds vote is needed in both the Senate and the lower house to override a presidential veto.