argentina

Argentina, officially the Argentine Republic, is a country in South America, bordered by Chile to the west and south, Bolivia and Paraguay to the north and Brazil and Uruguay to the northeast. Argentina claims sovereignty over part of Antarctica,...

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Argentina, officially the Argentine Republic, is a country in South America, bordered by Chile to the west and south, Bolivia and Paraguay to the north and Brazil and Uruguay to the northeast. Argentina claims sovereignty over part of Antarctica, the Falkland Islands and South Georgia and the South Sandwich Islands.

The country is a federation of 23 provinces and the autonomous city of Buenos Aires, its capital and largest city. It is the eighth-largest country in the world by land area and the largest among Spanish-speaking nations. Argentina is a founding member of the United Nations, Mercosur, the Union of South American Nations, the Organization of Ibero-American States, the World Bank Group and the World Trade Organization, and is one of the G-15 and G-20 major economies.

A recognized Southern Cone power, and middle power, Argentina is Latin America's third-largest economy, with a "very high" rating on the Human development index. Within Latin America, Argentina has the fifth highest nominal GDP per capita and the highest in purchasing power terms. Analysts have argued that the country has a "foundation for future growth due to its market size, levels of foreign direct investment, and percentage of high-tech exports as share of total manufactured goods", and it is classed by investors as middle emerging economy.

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experiences (5)

have you spent time in argentina? share your experiences

8

argentina - anonymous' reflections after years there in their 20s

posted by anonymous on 10/04/13.

I studied abroad in Buenos Aires for 5 months and then returned for an additional 2 years. So almost 2 ½ years in total. When I went there to study abroad I wanted to study Spanish. I had already been to Spain and Mexico and wanted to try something different. Argentina was far, exotic, I knew almost nothing about it, and there were a lot of study abroad programs located in there. I gave it a shot and I loved it.

After I graduated college, I returned to teach English. I wasn’t sure how long I planned on staying, I thought maybe a year at most. I ended up staying 2 years. And I really only came back to the US because I missed my family and having legal status (being able to open bank accounts, cell phone accounts, work legally, etc…)

Buenos Aires is a major metropolitan city. It sits at the mouth of a river delta. The weather is very temperate. Hot and humid in the summer, chilly in the winter (but rarely below freezing). It is huge, and sprawling. The 3rd largest city in Latin America in fact.

It has a downtown (the location of the obelisk) with large buildings but very few true skyscrapers. The architecture is influenced by French, Spanish and Italian buildings from the...

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5

buenos aires, argentina - anonymous' reflections after years there in their 30s

posted by anonymous on 10/30/13.

How old were you when you came to Argentina? Where were you before?

I moved to Argentina when I was about 30. Immediately before that I had been in Costa Rica for a bit more than a year and before that had come from my home state of California. Before moving to Latin America, I had already spent close to a year over many individual trips, so I had some clue what I was getting into.

Describe your impressions of Buenos Aires. Did you like living there?

I arrived in the middle of the night with no idea where I was going to stay and I had never been there before. I jumped in a taxi and just cruised from hotel to hotel looking for a room.

What struck me off the bat was that despite it being about 3AM, there were people all over the place, and not shady looking creeper types, just normal people out for a late, late night on the town. Of all the large cities I've been in at 3AM Buenos Aires, at least the central downtown area was decidedly less sketchy than most.

I'm not much of a city guy, I really prefer mountains and small towns. Buenos Aires is a big bustling city and the nearest mountain in the country is about 500 miles away, so I really missed the outdoors while I was...

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5

buenos aires, argentina - anonymous' reflections after years there in their 30s

posted by anonymous on 11/22/13.

How much time have you spent in Argentina?

I was there just shy of 5 years, from Feb, 2009 to Oct, 2013.

How old were you when you came to Argentina? Where were you before?

I was 32 when I arrived. Before, I was living in Seattle, and had just finished m bachelor at the University of Washington.

What brought you to Argentina? What made you choose Argentina over any other place you could've gone?

I am a linguist and spent about 5 years studying Spanish before graduating from the university. I had a Dominican friend who learned English in the US when there as part of an NGO. I spoke to him after he returned home and noticed that he had lost a lot of his English in the month or so that he was there. For me, that sealed the deal - I was going to do a masters, so why not do it in a Spanish-speaking country? I knew that I needed to "seal" the language in, and had to go right away so that it didn't go stale. I researched a number of countries: Venezuela, Peru, Chile, Argentina, Mexico, and decided that Argentina looked like the best bet since it is a very developed country, and has a very good infrastructure (and free healthcare!).

What is Buenos Aires like? What are the...

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4

buenos aires, argentina - anonymous' thoughts after months there in their 20s

posted by anonymous on 11/05/13.

How much time have you spent in Argentina?

I spent around 2 months in Argentina. An old friend of mine from high school was studying there at the time, and since her parents didn’t want her to be alone, she was encouraged to invite friends along to stay at her apartment with her. I moved from Seattle, Washington in the US down to Argentina in the late summer of 2010 and left after about 2 months.

How old were you when you came to Argentina? Where were you before? What brought you to Argentina?

I was 23 at the time. I was living in Seattle before I left, and the main reason that I wanted to go to Argentina was because I’d never lived outside the country before, and the opportunity to spend more than a week or so abroad sounded much better than staying in the Pacific Northwest. Argentina (and Buenos Aires specifically) had a reputation for being one of the major cultural centers of South America and I wanted to experience it very badly.

My choice was largely based on the fact that my room was free. My friend, Adri, lived in a building owned by her father. Her parents were so thrilled that she wouldn’t be living alone that they offered me the room for free.

I should also...

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4

buenos aires, argentina - anonymous' thoughts after months there in their 30s

posted by anonymous on 12/12/13.

How much time have you spent in Argentina?

3 months.

How old were you when you came to Argentina? Where were you before?

34 - I had just moved from Medellin, Colombia.

What brought you to Argentina? What made you choose Argentina over any other place you could've gone?

I wanted to get a good mix in my year of slow travel around South America - Buenos Aires is the big city of South America - they call it the Paris of the south, and you really do get that sensation of being in European city with all that old world architecture.

Describe the city you lived in in Argentina and your impressions of it.

It was a huge city - there was a sense of faded glory about it - which makes sense historically. There's a lavishness about the architecture and the food and culture that mixes with the current economic situation that contributes to that feeling.

How does the city you lived in compare to other cities in Argentina? What drew you to the city you lived in over other cities in Argentina?

It's like any big city in the world - people are little bit brusque, it takes forever to get anywhere - but I wanted to live there to get that classic Argentinian experience, and I felt...

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demographics

population

42,192,494 (July 2012 est.)

ethnic groups

white (mostly Spanish and Italian) 97%, mestizo (mixed white and Amerindian ancestry), Amerindian, or other non-white groups 3%

languages

Spanish (official), Italian, English, German, French, indigenous (Mapudungun, Quechua)

religions

nominally Roman Catholic 92% (less than 20% practicing), Protestant 2%, Jewish 2%, other 4%

age structure

0-14: 0-14 years: 25.2% (male 5,450,679/ female 5,200,704)

15-64: 15-64 years: 63.6% (male 13,400,997/ female 13,440,948)

65+: 65 years and over: 11.1% (male 1,940,810/ female 2,758,356) (2012 est.)

urbanization

92% of total population (2010)

life expectancy

77.14 years

literacy rate

97.2%

average years of education

16 years

economics

cost of living

4/10 (medium-low)

economic overview

Argentina benefits from rich natural resources, a highly literate population, an export-oriented agricultural sector, and a diversified industrial base. Although one of the...

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Argentina benefits from rich natural resources, a highly literate population, an export-oriented agricultural sector, and a diversified industrial base. Although one of the world's wealthiest countries 100 years ago, Argentina suffered during most of the 20th century from recurring economic crises, persistent fiscal and current account deficits, high inflation, mounting external debt, and capital flight. A severe depression, growing public and external indebtedness, and a bank run culminated in 2001 in the most serious economic, social, and political crisis in the country's turbulent history. Interim President Adolfo RODRIGUEZ SAA declared a default - the largest in history - on the government's foreign debt in December of that year, and abruptly resigned only a few days after taking office. His successor, Eduardo DUHALDE, announced an end to the peso's decade-long 1-to-1 peg to the US dollar in early 2002. The economy bottomed out that year, with real GDP 18% smaller than in 1998 and almost 60% of Argentines under the poverty line. Real GDP rebounded to grow by an average 8.5% annually over the subsequent six years, taking advantage of previously idled industrial capacity and labor, an audacious debt restructuring and reduced debt burden, excellent international financial conditions, and expansionary monetary and fiscal policies. Inflation also increased, however, during the administration of President Nestor KIRCHNER, which responded with price restraints on businesses, as well as export taxes and restraints, and beginning in early 2007, with understating inflation data. Cristina FERNANDEZ DE KIRCHNER succeeded her husband as President in late 2007, and the rapid economic growth of previous years began to slow sharply the following year as government policies held back exports and the world economy fell into recession. The economy has rebounded strongly from the 2009 recession, but the government's continued reliance on expansionary fiscal and monetary policies risks exacerbating already high inflation.

major industries

food processing, motor vehicles, consumer durables, textiles, chemicals and petrochemicals, printing, metallurgy, steel

food processing, motor vehicles, consumer durables, textiles, chemicals and petrochemicals, printing, metallurgy, steel

gdp per capita

$17,700 (2011 est.)

gdp growth rate

8.9% (2011 est.)

gdp composition by sector

agriculture: 10.7% industry: 31.1% services: 58.2% (2011 est.)

unemployment rate

7.2% (2011 est.)

population below poverty line

30% note: data are based on private estimates (2010)

gini index

45.8 (2009) country comparison to the world: 36