Argentine President, Cristina Fernández de Kirchner should be applauded for her recent increase in the funding of Argentina’s Conditional Cash Transfer (CCT) program, Asignación Universal por Hijo (AUH). The CCT program is a government scheme to reward low-income families for being in compliance with regulations specified by the government. Inspired by comparable programs now flourishing in Brazil and Mexico, AUH focuses on the development of school-aged children by issuing cash payments contingent upon fulfilling school attendance and vaccination mandates. In the current region-wide attempt to combat the high inequality that plagues Latin America, CCT programs are enjoying a new wave of popularity.
On September 7, Kirchner increased the funding for AUH by 22.7% or about USD 520 million. The enhanced spending on AUH is among other changes, such as the hike in the national minimum wage, which the Argentine government has enacted in response to the high inflation in Argentina. Although the increase in the funding for AUH further underscores the present inflation, Kirchner should still be recognized for managing to arrange the full funding of AUH. The benefits of the programs are both short and long-term. In the short-term, AUH provides immediate funding for low-income families, while in the long-term, the CCT program invests in human capital, ensuring a more promising future for Argentina.