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Argentina

Capital City: Buenos Aires
%T:%M %A in Buenos Aires

In 2005, GDP growth rate was 7.5% in 2005. The Argentinian economy is going through an obvious revival since 2003, after it collapsed during the first semester of 2002. In 2003, GDP growth rate was 8.8% (-10.9% in 2002), 9% in 2004. The IMF forecasts a 4.5% growth in 2006 due to the weak consumption and meagre investments. Peso devaluation has re-launched exports, mainly of agricultural products. Industrial production is being rehabilitated and the other sectors are taking advantage of this revival. However, Argentina's economy is still very fragile: external debt is huge (73% of the GDP in 2005), financial system is not secure, especially for interantional investors, social situation is precary ( 25% of the population live under the poverty line, according to official figures) and the country is experiencing an energy crisis.

The country however, has numerous assets to withstand the difficulties: a successful and export-oriented agriculture (wine, corn, soya and breeding) which attracts foreign investments, considerable natural resources (copper, gas and oil) and a qualified and competitive labour force. The government's priority to pull the country out of the crisis on the long term is to restore its political credibility and to free itself of its external debt exorbitant burden (111.7% of GDP in 2004 and 73% in 2005).

Argentina is a member of Mercosur (as well as Brasil, Uruguay and Paraguay), the 4th largest free trade area in the world. The principal exports partners of the country are Brazil, the United States and Chile. Argentina exports mainly mineral fuels, mineral oils and products of their distillation.
Its principal imports partners are Japan, Brazil and the United-States. Argentina mainly imports machines, electronic and electrical equipment, vehicles and chemical products.

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