In this note we describe, on the one hand, the formal institutional structure of the Argentine fiscal federalism. Then, on the other hand, we show how fiscal federalism really works in Argentina. We analyze data on fiscal behavior of the federal and provincial governments during the nineties. The goal of this note is precisely to point that one of the main issues of the current situation in Argentina is precisely the difference between ‘formal’ and ‘real’ institutions. At the heart of such difference is the lack of enforcement of national laws and formal inter-provincial agreements. We illustrate this by studying how formal rules to the provincial borrowing have functioned during the last decade
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