Can a Pipeline Fix Argentina’s Economy—and Sway the Election?

By David Feliba

President Fernández and Finance Minister Massa are hoping Vaca Muerta will help the country export its way out of stagnation—starting before this year’s presidential election.

BUENOS AIRES - Next June 20, Flag Day in Argentina, is a patriotic date. It could also mark a pivotal moment for the country's efforts to replicate the U.S. fracking boom—on the eve of a presidential election. The Alberto Fernández government is working against the clock to complete construction of a 356-mile-long gas pipeline before winter hits Argentina, and demand for gas—and imports—spikes. Vaca Muerta, in Neuquén province, is the world’s second-largest shale gas deposit, and the fourth biggest in shale oil. With the duct in place, its massive resources could be made...

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