Alberto Fernandez: “This year we have doubled our efforts for 2019 to invest in science, innovation and development.”

March 03, 2021 11:18 am | Reading time: 2 minutes
March 03, 2021 11:18 am
| Reading time: 2 minutes

If you only have a few seconds, read these lines:

  • If you look at the numbers in constant values ​​(that is, taking into account inflation), the budget for the science and technology function was $ 92.376 million in 2019 and it will be $ 95.270 million by 2021, according to the 2021 budget.
  • An area investment is estimated at 0.28% of the GDP for 2021, while it was 0.23% in 2019; That is, within two years it increased by 0.5 percentage points.
  • Although there will be a budget increase compared to last year for the Macri administration, this is far from weak, as the president indicated in his speech to Congress.

The nation’s president, Alberto Fernandez, spoke about the flag in Speech He opened the legislative sessions and said: “Investing in science, innovation and development is crucial to developing and sustaining growth. This year, we more than doubled our dedicated effort in 2019. ”. In the text of the speech they sent from the presidency, he spoke of “resources” rather than “efforts.”

In fixed pesos, that is, taking into account inflation, the investment in science and technology – that is, all the expenditures that the state incurs in relation to science, regardless of which ministry it makes – in 2019 amounted to $ 92.376 million and by 2021 $ 95270 million according to 2021 budget. So the investment increased 3.1% but did not double, contrary to what the president said.

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Verification He consulted with the nation’s Ministry of Science, Technology and Innovation to find out what data the president took to make such a statement, however You did not receive a response at the time of publication of this note.

Analysis of resources devoted to science

The Official data It was found that the investment in the “science and technology” function (which includes Conicet, the Ministry of Science and 12 scientific and technological organizations distributed in 11 ministries) in current pesos, without an adjustment for inflation, in 2019 It was $ 49,052.57 millionWhereas for 2021, the budget approved in the 2021 budget will be $ 95.270.39 million. However, these figures do not take into account the inflation that occurred during this period.

according to Analytics From a budget science and technology function Superior Written by Jorge Aliaga, Former Dean of the Faculty of Exact Sciences of the University of Buenos Aires (UBA) and Former Under-Secretary for Institutional Evaluation of the Former Ministry of Science and Technology of the Nation between 2014 and 2015 – during the second term of Christina Fernandez de Kirchner-, In constant pesos – that is, when taking inflation into account – the investment in 2019 is $ 92.376 million and in 2021 it will be $ 95.270 million according to the 2021 budget, meaning an increase of 3.1%.

Another way to analyze the budget is in relation to the Gross Domestic Product (GDP) of a country. In 2019, during the last year of Mauricio Macri’s presidency (let’s change), there was an investment of 0.23% of GDP, the lowest level since 2006, as shown in this note. In 2020, as per the 2021 budget, it ends at 0.25% of the product.

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On February 24, the National Convention Acknowledged The National Science, Technology and Innovation System Funding Bill which, among other benefits to the sector, outlines a gradual increase in the science budget.

The initiative expects to reach 1% of GDP in 2032, as shown in this note – that is, it will quadruple the current level – and An estimated investment of 0.28% of the GDP for 2021. This is, If compared to 2019, there will be an increase in investment, but it has not doubled, as the president said, but increased only 0.5 percentage points between 2019 and 2021.

If spending on science is analyzed in relation to total spending, then there has also been a deterioration in recent years. In 2019, the last year of macrismo, it represented 1.03% of the total budget (not of the country’s GDP).

By 2020, the year of the epidemic, that number had dropped to 0.95% of the total, the lowest in decades. By 2021, based on the latest budget, a plus A 1,13%, A number that is still low compared to its 2009 peak, when it reached 1.62%, as shown in this note.

The 2021 budget envisages the Ministry of Science, Technology and Innovation a 24.4% increase in real termsWith regard to the funds allocated in 2019, and increase their participation in the budget.

Conicet will also get a budget A little higher For 2019 in real terms. However, it will not be replicated either, the President said.

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