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BUENOS AIRES: Argentina’s government has scheduled emergency sessions of parliament beginning next week to address a package of controversial reforms by President Javier Milei, who has ordered a broad deregulation of the economy.

Milei himself issued the call late Friday for Congress to open an extraordinary session from December 26 through January 31 next year, following a week of protests by labor unions, tenant groups and leftist organizations against the reforms contained in a presidential decree that needs an endorsement by legislators.

The main focus is the libertarian Milei’s mega-decree that changes or scraps more than 350 economic regulations in a country that has grown accustomed to heavy government intervention in the market.

Among the reforms, the text repeals the law on rents, which would abolish the established price ceiling. It also eliminates some worker protections and laws that shield consumers from abusive price increases, at a time when inflation exceeds 160 percent per year and the poverty level has surpassed 40 percent.

Milei’s “chainsaw plan” to cut state spending — he waved around a working chainsaw while on the campaign trail this year — triggered a series of street protests against the government over the past week, without major incident.

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