Interview: Mario Blejer

What were the circumstances when you took over at the central bank in January?

The economy had been suffering more than four years of recession with negative growth and increasing unemployment. A bank run had started in March 2001 and by November it had seriously threatened the banking sector. A set of unpopular and drastic restrictions on withdrawals were then imposed. This brought down the government at the end of December. By January 2002 there was no confidence in the banking sector or in

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