ARGENTINA has declared an agricultural emergency as it confronts one of the worst droughts in decades. The decree will defer tax payments for thousands of farmers for a year. Several regions of Argentina, including the provinces of Buenos Aires, Cordoba, La Pampa and Entre Rios, have been hit by THE WORST DROUGHT SINCE AT LEAST 1971. Since March last year, rainfall has been significantly below normal. Among the effects, some 800,000 head of cattle have been lost, while in Entre Rios some 90% of the wheat crop has been ruined. The worst affected area is the Pampas region, where winds have been whipping up the dry soil and coating huge swathes of barren land. Farmers' leaders indicated the measures did not go far enough. "The only thing this announcement achieves is to postpone the payment of taxes, and that is of no use to the farmer who has lost his entire crop."