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Grazing Positioning System?
Grazing Positioning System?

BUENOS AIRES — Facing the risk of billions of dollars of debt claims, the Argentine government is looking to maximize its revenues — whichever way it can.

Argentina's tax agency AFIP has decided to start keeping an electronic tab of all the country's livestock beginning next year, tracking their movements and making sure their owners are paying all required taxes. This would not be the first time the government of President Cristina Kirchner seeks to squeeze the farming sector for revenues — it is, well, one of Argentina's main cash cows.

The idea concocted by the agency's chief Ricardo Echegaray is to implant a microchip or electronic tracking device in Argentina's 51.4 million livestock. Through a new system called SIFTA (in English, the Animal Traceability Fiscal System), it would be able to track every bovine's personal history: birth, death, transfer, industrial usage, sale and other taxable procedures needed to obtain a report of its entire history, according to a government document outlining the plan.

SIFTA will also allow AFIP to form enterprises to supply chips and other digital tracking devices. "A new business venture for Echegaray?" quipped Miguel Schiariti, head of the Meat Industry Chamber (CICCRA).

Schiariti said the new measure was "unnecessary" as the country's food safety agency SENASA already has a tracking system AFIP can use. Many cows were also already identified with Allflex tags.

The new digital tagging procedures are slated to begin in January.

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Society

Single Parents In Portugal Turn "It Takes A Village" Into A Practical Reality

The death of a young child left alone at home while his single mother was out shocked a community. Now, single parents have banded together to offer support to each other. And they're succeeding in the face of overwhelming challenges.

Single Parents In Portugal Turn "It Takes A Village" Into A Practical Reality

Women from the association Jangada D'Emoções, which started Colo100Horas

Maíra Streit

SINTRA — The large and curious eyes of Gurnaaz Kaur reveal her desire to understand the world.

This four-year-old Indian girl doesn’t speak Portuguese yet. A few months have passed since she left her country on the family adventure across the European continent. She uses a few gestures to try to express herself and greets people with a “bom dia” (good morning), one of the few expressions he has learned.

Nahary Conniott, 8, is also looking for ways to interact. From Angola and on the autism spectrum disorder, she has already experienced difficult situations and was asked to leave the private school she attended. In the other schools in which the mother enrolled her, the refusal was always justified by the lack of vacancies.

Children with such different paths found the support they deserved in the Colo100Horas project. Started in 2021, it is a self-organized network of women who came together to help immigrants with their immense daily challenges in Sintra, in western Portugal.

The long list of problems meant they banded together to look for a solution: the strenuous routine of caring for children (still imposed in most homes as the responsibility of women), low salaries, the overcrowding of daycare centers, excessive work and the difficulty with shift schedules, which is common in jobs in the catering and cleaning industries.

A tragic case that occurred recently in the neighborhood that drew attention to the need for greater support for families: a six-year-old boy died after falling from the ninth floor of the building where he lived. He was at home with only his two little brothers, while his mother had left to go to the market, a few meters away.

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