National Constitution
Second Part: Authorities of the Nation

Chapter IV

Powers of Congress

Section 75.- Congress is empowered:

1.- To legislate about national Customs. To lay import and export duties that shall be uniform throughout the Nation as well as the valuations on which they are assessed.

2.- To levy indirect taxes as a power concurrent with the provinces. To levy direct taxes for a specified term and proportionally equal throughout the national territory, provided that the defense, common security and general welfare of the State so require it. The taxes under this subsection are subject to joint participation, except for those which, in part or in all, have specific allocation.

An agreement-law based on understandings between the Nation and the provinces shall establish systems of joint participation for these taxes, guaranteeing the automatic remittance of funds.

The distribution among the Nation, the provinces and the City of Buenos Aires, and among themselves, shall be carried out in direct relation to the jurisdictions, services and functions of each one of them taking into account objective sharing criteria; it shall be based on principles of equity and solidarity giving priority to the achievement of a similar degree of development, of living standards and equal opportunities throughout the national territory.

The agreement-law shall originate in the Senate and shall be enacted with the absolute majority of all the members of each House; it shall be neither unilaterally amended nor regulated, and shall be approved by the provinces.

There shall be no transfer of jurisdictions, services or functions without the corresponding reallocation of funds approved by a law of Congress, when appropriate, and by the interested province or the City of Buenos Aires, as the case may be.

A federal fiscal body shall be in charge of the control and monitoring of what is laid down in this subsection, according to the law which shall guarantee the representation of all the provinces and of the City of Buenos Aires as regards its composition.

3.- To set and modify specific allocations that may be subject to joint participation, for a specified term, by a special law enacted with the absolute majority of all the members of each House.

4.- To borrow money on the credit of the Nation.

5.- To decide about the use and sale of national lands.

6.- To establish and regulate a Federal bank with power to issue money, as well as other national banks.

7.- To settle the payment of the domestic and foreign debt of the Nation.

8.- To fix annually, according to the standards laid down in the third paragraph of subsection 2 of this Section, the general budget of expenses and the estimate of resources of the National Administration, based on the general program of the government and on the public investment plan, and to approve or reject the investment account.

9.- To grant subsidies from the National Treasury to those provinces the incomes of which, according to their budgets, do not cover their ordinary expenses.

10.- To regulate the free navigation of inland rivers, to authorize the operation of such ports as it shall consider necessary, and to set up or suppress Customs.

11.- To coin money, to regulate the value thereof and that of foreign currency; and to adopt a uniform standard of weights and measures for the whole Nation.

12.- To enact the Civil, Commercial, Criminal, Mining, Labor and Social Security Codes, in unified or separate bodies, provided that such codes do not alter local jurisdictions, and their enforcement shall correspond to the federal or provincial courts depending on the respective jurisdictions for persons or things; and particularly to enact general laws of naturalization and nationality for the whole nation, based on the principle of nationality by birth or by option for the benefit of Argentina; as well as laws on bankruptcy, counterfeiting of currency and public documents of the State, and those laws that may be required to establish trial by jury.

13.- To regulate trade with foreign nations, and of the provinces among themselves.

14.- To regulate and establish the general post offices of the Nation.

15.- To settle definitely the boundaries of the national territory, to fix those of the provinces, to create new ones, and to determine, by special legislation, the organization, administration and government that the national territories outside the boundaries assigned to the provinces are to have.

16.- To provide for the security of the frontiers.

17.- To recognize the ethnic and cultural pre-existence of indigenous peoples of Argentina.

To guarantee respect for the identity and the right to bilingual and intercultural education; to recognize the legal capacity of their communities, and the community possession and ownership of the lands they traditionally occupy; and to regulate the granting of other lands adequate and sufficient for human development; none of them shall be sold, transmitted or subject to liens or attachments. To guarantee their participation in issues related to their natural resources and in other interests affecting them. The provinces may jointly exercise these powers.

18.- To provide for the prosperity of the country, for the advance and welfare of all the provinces, and for the progress of education, drawing up general and university educational plans, and promoting industry, immigration, the construction of railways and navigable canals, the colonization of government-owned lands, the introduction and establishment of new industries, the imports of foreign capital, and the exploration of inland rivers, through laws protecting these aims and through temporary grants of privileges and stimulating rewards.

19.- To provide everything relevant to human development, economic progress with social justice, the growth of the national economy, the creation of jobs, the professional training of workers, the defense of the currency value, the scientific and technological research and development, their overall diffusion and beneficial use.

To provide for the harmonious growth of the Nation and the settlement of its territory; to promote differential policies in order to balance the relative unequal development of provinces and regions. These initiatives shall originate in the Senate.

To enact laws referring to the organization and basis of education consolidating national unity and respecting provincial and local characteristics; which ensure the state responsibility that cannot be delegated, family and society participation, the fostering of democratic values and equal opportunities and possibilities with no discrimination whatsoever; and which guarantee the principles of free and equitable State public education as well as the autonomy and autarky of national universities.

To enact laws protecting the cultural identity and plurality, the free creation and circulation of artistic works of authors, the artistic heritage and places devoted to cultural and audiovisual activities.

20.- To establish courts inferior to the Supreme Court; to create and suppress employments, to fix the duties thereof, to grant pensions, to decree honors and to grant general amnesties.

21.- To accept or reject the reasons for the resignation of the President or Vice-President of the Republic, and declare the need to call a new election when required.

22.- To approve or reject treaties concluded with other nations and international organizations, and concordats with the Holy See. Treaties and concordats have a higher hierarchy than laws.

The American Declaration of the Rights and Duties of Man; the Universal Declaration of Human Rights; the American Convention on Human Rights; the International Pact on Economic, Social and Cultural Rights; the International Pact on Civil and Political Rights and its empowering Protocol; the Convention on the Prevention and Punishment of Genocide; the International Convention on the Elimination of all Forms of Racial Discrimination; the Convention on the Elimination of all Forms of Discrimination against Woman; the Convention against Torture and other Cruel, Inhuman or Degrading Treatments or Punishments; the Convention on the Rights of the Child; in the full force of their provisions, they have constitutional hierarchy, do no repeal any section of the First Part of this Constitution and are to be understood as complementing the rights and guarantees recognized herein. They shall only be denounced, in such event, by the National Executive Power after the approval of two-thirds of all the members of each House.

In order to attain constitutional hierarchy, the other treaties and conventions on human rights shall require the vote of two-thirds of all the members of each House, after their approval by Congress.

23.- To legislate and promote positive measures guaranteeing true equal opportunities and treatment, the full benefit and exercise of the rights recognized by this Constitution and by the international treaties on human rights in force, particularly referring to children, women, the aged, and disabled persons.

To issue a special and integral social security system to protect children from abandonment, since pregnancy up to the end of elementary education, and to protect the mother during pregnancy and the period of lactation.

24.- To approve treaties of integration which delegate powers and jurisdiction to supranational organizations under reciprocal and equal conditions, and which respect the democratic order and human rights. The rules derived therefrom have a higher hierarchy than laws.

The approval of these treaties with Latin American States shall require the absolute majority of all the members of each House. In the case of treaties with other States, the National Congress, with the absolute majority of the members present of each House, shall declare the advisability of the approval of the treaty which shall only be approved with the vote of the absolute majority of all the members of each House, one hundred and twenty days after said declaration of advisability.

The denouncement of the treaties referred to in this subsection shall require the prior approval of the absolute majority of all the members of each House.

25.- To authorize the Executive Power to declare war or make peace.

26.- To empower the Executive Power to order reprisals and to make rules concerning the booty.

27.- To establish the Armed Forces in times of peace and war; and to make rules for their organization and government.

28.- To authorize the entry of foreign troops into the territory of the Nation and to allow national troops to leave the country.

29.- To declare in state of siege one or several parts of the Nation in case of domestic commotion, and to approve or suspend the state of siege declared by the Executive Power during a recess of Congress.

30.- To exercise exclusive legislation over the territory of the Capital City of the Nation and to enact the legislation necessary for the achievement of the specific ends of premises of national interest in the territory of the Republic. Provincial and municipal authorities shall hold power to levy taxes and power of police over these premises, insofar as they do not interfere with the achievement of those ends.

31.- To order the federal intervention of a province or of the City of Buenos Aires.

To approve or revoke the intervention decreed by the Executive Power during its recess.

32.- To make all appropriate laws and rules to put into effect the aforementioned powers, and all other powers granted by this Constitution to the Government of the Argentine Nation.

Section 76.- The legislative powers shall not be delegated to the Executive Power save for issues concerning administration and public emergency, with a specified term for their exercise and according to the delegating conditions established by Congress.

The expiration of the term foreseen in the previous paragraph shall not imply the revision of the legal relationships emerging from the rules issued as a result of the powers delegated by Congress.

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