BUENOS AIRES, June 25 (Xinhua) -- Argentinian President Mauricio Macri on Monday criticized the 24-hour general strike arranged by the General Confederation of Workers (CGT), which is currently paralyzing the South American country.
Speaking at the Children's Hospital Doctor Debilio Blanco Villegas, in his home town of Tandil, Macri denounced the CGT's decision, saying "strikes do not contribute anything, they add up to nothing."
In an interview with local Tandil newspaper, El Eco, Macri said that the strikes "do not make sense because there has not been a government in decades that cares so much about employment, about workers, about generating new opportunities and strengthening the existing businesses we have in order to create new ones."
He added that instead of striking, both parties should sit down together in open dialogue.
The CGT, Argentina's principal workers union, called the strike to demand improved salaries and demonstrate their rejection of the economic austerity measures taken by the government.
Monday's strike is the CGT's third against the Macri government since December 2015. Arranged June 12, it is supported by other major unions, including the Argentinian Workers' Center. Other more radical groups have also joined the strike, cutting off access to areas of the capital, Buenos Aires.
Unions taking part have come from many major industries including urban transport, aviation, banking, education and refuse collection. Members of the judiciary and state employees have also shown their support.
Juan Carlos Schmid, the CGT General Secretary, told a press conference that "the strike is developing across the country and there is a high level of compliance. A general strike signals a failure of social and political dialogue. The CGT has arrived at this decision after exhausting all other possibilities."