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Argentineans heading to polls in presidential election

Estimated 34 million voters eligible to cast ballots in Sunday's elections

Ali Murat Alhas and Muhammed Emin Canik   | 27.10.2019
Argentineans heading to polls in presidential election file photo

ANKARA/BUENOS AIRES

Argentineans began voting on Sunday to choose the country’s next president amid a struggling economy in South America’s second-largest country.

**Voting began at 8.00 a.m. local time (0600GMT) and will end at 18.00 p.m. (1600GMT).

According to recent opinion polls, opposition candidate Alberto Fernandez has the upper hand against President Mauricio Macri, who has been in office since December 2015 and been labeled business friendly.

In August's primary vote -- seen as a dry run for the general elections -- career politician Fernandez beat Macri by 16 points, to the surprise for many Argentineans.

According to official figures, the country's economy has been struggling due to surging unemployment, and inflation and poverty levels have peaked in recent years.

In Argentina, a candidate can win the presidential polls in a single round with 45% of the vote, or 40% of the vote with at 10 percentage points ahead of the number two candidate.

If there is no winner of the first round, then the candidates will head to a second-round runoff slated for Nov. 24.

An estimated 34 million registered voters are eligible to cast ballots in the elections.

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