Country Profile: Argentina
Argentina is the second-largest area of land in the South American continent and the eighth largest in the world. With a total area of 2.8 million km2, Argentina narrows as one travels from the north to the south. Argentina is approximately 3,694km long, top to bottom and at its widest, extending from west to east, is approximately 1,423 km. The Atlantic Ocean stretches along the east coast, whilst to the west is Chile, to the north Bolivia and Paraguay and to the northeast is Brazil and Uruguay.
Argentina is remarkably varied, with rainforests in the north of the country, desert in southern Patagonia and a region covered with mountains and lakes spanning the Andes. The North East is also notably dry and sparse.
The arable area in Argentina totals 190,000 km2. Thanks to its varied climatic features, a wide variety of products can be grown in Argentina with relative ease. The soil is very suitable for forestry and, as a result, the country is known for its forests.
The highest mountain in the country is the Aconcagua summit on the Andes, standing 6,959m tall. The Andes continue westwards from here to join the border into Chile. To the west of the Andes is the wide plains of Pampa. Pampa Plain covers approximately 25 percent of the country and consists mostly of meadows. This plain serves as the a primary location for much of Argentina's agriculture and livestock, due to it being very advantageous in terms of climate.
Argentina is the third largest economy in Latin America, after Brazil and Mexico, in terms of the size of its GDP. In Argentina, which has a population of approximately 44 million, the per capita national income is US $11,652. Despite the gap in income distribution, it is among the countries with the highest income per capita in Latin America.
The Argentine economy is predominantly based on agriculture. 9.9 percent of GDP is agriculture, 30 percent from industry specifically and 60.2 percent pertaining to other services. Rapidly increasing prices of agricultural products have become an important source of growth for the Argentine economy.
Among the many agricultural and livestock products Argentinia produce, te country's main export products are soybeans and their derivatives, as well as corn, wheat, crustaceans and beef.
Argentina's largest export market is Brazil. According to 2018 data, approximately 12.3 percent of exports worth $7.6 billion was conducted with Brazilian companies. China takes second place in the rankings, with a share of total exports at 5.2 percent.
Agriculture and livestock
The agriculture industry holds an important place in the economy of Argentina. The increases in price of raw materials greatly benefits the Argentine economy and has enabled much growth in this area. Approximately 270,000 km2 of land in the country is suitable for agriculture. There is a marked goal to expand this area to further boost the economy. The main crops farmed in Argentina are soy, sunflower, wheat, corn, barley, oats, rice, safflower, cotton, sugarcane and various fruits and vegetables.
Argentina is among the most important meat producers in the world, with over 51 million cattle farmed in the country regularly. Due to excessive demand in recent years, there has been a marked increase in meat prices. The dairy sector is also a crucial sector for Argentina. Products such as cream cheese, ice cream and frozen yogurt are consumed extensively by the public.
Argentina continues to be one of the world's major agricultural product suppliers, primarily in terms of wheat, corn, soybeans and meat products. Soybeans are especially profitable for Argentina, due to the fact that it is easy to export and has favourable market prices.
Argentina has a 4,700km long beach where fishing occurs in abundance. Argentinians can hunt many hard-to-find fish on its shores, including squid. Aside from local fishing companies, Korea, Japan, Russia, Spain and many other countries can also fish in the waters of Argentina, providing they have international agreements in place.
Fisheries is one of the most developed sectors within the country, and most of the fish caught in Argentine waters are exported without processing. The biggest export markets for fishery products are Brazil, Spain, USA, Italy and Colombia.