• Official languages: Spanish.
  • Geographical location: is a country located mostly in the southern half of South America. Sharing the bulk of the Southern Cone with Chile to the west, the country is also bordered by Bolivia and Paraguay to the north, Brazil to the northeast, Uruguay and the South Atlantic Ocean to the east, and the Drake Passage to the south. Argentina is the eighth-largest country in the world, the fourth largest in the Americas, and the largest Spanish-speaking nation.
  • Administrative divisions: the state is subdivided into twenty-three provinces and one autonomous city, Buenos Aires, which is the federal capital of the nation as decided by Congress. The provinces and the capital have their own constitutions, but exist under a federal system. Argentina claims sovereignty over part of Antarctica, the Falkland Islands (Spanish: Islas Malvinas), and South Georgia and the South Sandwich Islands.
  • Capital: Buenos Aires.
  • Governance: Argentina is a federal constitutional republic and representative democracy. The government is regulated by a system of checks and balances defined by the Constitution of Argentina, the country's supreme legal document. The federal government is composed of three branches: the Legislative branch consists of the bicameral Congress, made up of the Senate and Deputy chambers, which makes federal law, declares war, approves treaties and has the power of the purse and of impeachment, by which it can remove sitting members of the government. In the Executive branch, the President is the commander-in-chief of the military, can veto legislative bills before they become law — subject to Congressional override — and appoints the members of the Cabinet and other officers, who administer and enforce federal laws and policies. The President is elected directly by the vote of the people, serves a four-year term and may be elected to office no more than twice in a row. The Judicial branch includes the Supreme Court and lower federal courts.
  • Population: 45,38 million. 
  • Currency: Peso.
  • GDP: $383,1 billion (2020).
  • Time zone: GMT/UTC -3.
  • Telephone code: +54.
  • Barcode: 779.


Socio-economic situation of Argentina

In the first half of 2019, the Argentine economy continued to shrink, although since May of this year, after 12 months of continuous recession, some positive dynamics was recorded, primarily due to an increase in agricultural production. At the same time, industrial production and the construction industry continue to show a decline (-9.4% in average annual terms), as well as the service sector (-5.8% in average annual terms). Household incomes continue to decline, and the unemployment rate has risen to a record 10.1% for the first time since 2006. At the same time, 32% of the population is below the poverty line, and according to experts' forecasts, this figure may increase in the next statistical report, which will be published in September this year.

By the end of the first half of 2019, Argentina's GDP amounted to 518.5 billion US dollars, having decreased by 5.8% in annual terms. External debt was fixed at the level of 275.83 billion dollars. The negative balance of the current account of the balance of payments amounted to 3.849 billion dollars, while in the first six months of this year the foreign trade balance was in favor of Argentina in the amount of 5.59 billion dollars: exports – 30.75 billion dollars (2.4%), imports – 26.16 billion dollars (-27.9%). Annual inflation was 55.8%, and the average monthly inflation growth since the beginning of the year has been set at no more than 3%. As of August 2019, the country's gold and foreign exchange reserves have decreased to 58.62 billion dollars.

The latest published credit ratings of Argentina are as follows: S&P Global Ratings agency – "B" with a stable outlook, Moody's agency – "B2" with a negative outlook, Fitch Ratings agency - "B" with a negative outlook.

In July of this year, the IMF sent another tranche of a $5.4 billion loan to Argentina as part of a three-year stand-by loan program worth $57 billion, which was officially approved on June 20, 2018. The possibility of increasing social spending and the implementation by the Central Bank of Argentina of a large amount of dollar money supply was also authorized.

It is expected that by the end of 2019, the Argentine economy will continue to shrink, although, probably, starting from the second half of the year, it will gradually come out of recession. Strong inflationary pressures, a growing tax burden and tight financing conditions are already negatively affecting consumer spending and investment in fixed assets. Nevertheless, a steady increase in agricultural production should help mitigate the contraction of the economy. Analysts agree that the Argentine economy will shrink by 1.2 – 1.5% in 2019 and grow by 2.5% in 2020.

Argentina's investment policy and foreign investment

According to the information of the Sub-Secretariat for Investment Development and Trade Promotion of Argentina, at the moment the following sectors of the Argentine economy are the most attractive and promising for foreign investors:

  • food and beverage production. The products of this sector make up a significant part of Argentine exports;
  • biotechnology. The country has a developed pharmaceutical sector, modern equipment and technologies, qualified personnel;
  • software and computer science. There are about 1,600 companies in this field in the country, which allows Argentina to occupy one of the leading positions in the world in this field;
  • winemaking. It is one of the promising sectors of the economy due to high domestic demand and the popularity of Argentine wines on the world market;
  • automotive industry and production of spare parts and automotive components.

Due to the current economic situation, Argentina is not among the donor countries of foreign investment.


State regulation of investment activity

State regulation of foreign investments in Argentina is carried out by the Law "On Foreign Investments" No. 21382 of August 13, 1976 (as amended by Decree No. 1853 of September 2, 1993), as well as relevant intergovernmental agreements in the field of promotion and protection of investments.

In accordance with this Law, national and foreign investors have the same rights and obligations in the production and credit and financial fields, as well as in the legal and tax spheres.

Investments can be made in the following forms:

  • freely convertible foreign currency;
  • means of production, spare parts and accessories;
  • reinvestment by a foreign investor of the profits received in the country;
  • capitalization of external loans;
  • intellectual property (licenses, patents, know-how, trademarks, etc.).

The legal regime for the activities of foreign investors and the use of the profits received from investments cannot be less favorable than the legal regime for the activities and use of the profits received from investments provided to national investors.

There are no restrictions on foreign investments in Argentine securities issued by the State and private companies by open subscription or listed on the stock exchange. The only condition for such investments is that the securities must be purchased in accordance with the current regulations of the Central Bank governing the exchange of currency and the transfer of securities.

Foreign investments can be carried out in any form, from the conclusion of contracts for the provision of services to the opening of branches, the establishment of local commercial companies of foreign capital or participation in national commercial companies.

The establishment and liquidation of a commercial organization with foreign investments are carried out in accordance with the procedure provided for by the current legislation. Legal entities that are commercial organizations with foreign investments are subject to state registration in the Commercial Register at the Main Legal Inspection of Argentina in accordance with the procedure provided for by Law No. 19550 "On Trading Companies" and Law No. 22315 "On the Main Legal Inspection".

In accordance with Law No. 2592 of September 2, 2004, a temporary tax relief regime is in effect in Argentina to encourage exports and attract investment in new fixed assets (excluding cars) and infrastructure (excluding civil works). In accordance with the established regime, benefits are provided in the form of early VAT refund from the relevant fixed assets and infrastructure works, as well as in the case of accelerated depreciation of fixed assets when calculating income tax. This regime can be used by individuals residing in the territory of Argentina and legal entities established on the national territory.

Since January 2005, the Government of Argentina has introduced tax incentives for private companies (income tax refund or VAT refund) investing in the development of infrastructure and production facilities.

Mechanisms and institutions of State support for investments in Argentina

The issues of attracting foreign investment fall within the competence of the Sub-Secretariat for Investment Development and Trade Promotion of the Secretariat for Foreign Economic Relations of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Worship of Argentina.

The subsecretariat provides the following types of services to potential investors:

  • providing information to assess the investment attractiveness of objects;
  • consultations on legal issues, peculiarities of national and regional investment and tax legislation, legal formalities of doing business;
  • providing detailed information in the sectoral and geographical context on investment objects, investment support programs;
  • analysis of investment opportunities in strategic sectors of the economy through the mechanisms of the Investment Production Projects Data Bank (BaPIP);
  • facilitating the investment process at all stages of the project implementation;
  • establishing links between foreign investors and local companies.

In order to simplify the access of foreign investors to information about investment objects, the Subsecretariat forms and maintains a Database of Investment Production projects (information is available in Spanish). The data bank is an electronic portal on which information can be posted by both the company itself and private intermediaries or regional authorities.

Work with potential investors is conducted on a personal, confidential and gratuitous basis throughout the entire time, from the selection of the project to its completion.

In addition, in 2016, the Argentine Agency for Investment and International Trade (Agencia Argentina de Inversiones y Comercio Internacional) was established by the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Worship of Argentina together with the Ministry of Production of Argentina on the basis of the Exporters Support Fund "Exportar" with the active participation of President of the country M. Macri. The purpose of the Agency is to attract foreign direct investment in strategic sectors of the economy, to help Argentine companies expand their presence in world markets, to improve the business climate and regulatory environment in the country, to provide information on the markets of goods, services and capital to help both Argentine and foreign companies.

Argentina's Foreign Investment Attraction Policy (investment regime)

Measures aimed at improving the investment climate

In 2016, the Government of Argentina implemented a number of measures aimed at improving the investment climate and creating a sustainable platform for the inflow of foreign investment into the country. In particular, in February, it was possible to settle a dispute with a group of American hedge funds and bring the country out of the permanent pre-default state in which it has been for the last 15 years. This measure allowed Argentina to return to the global debt market and make a record placement of bonds in the amount of 16.5 billion US dollars.

The rates for raising foreign currency debt for Argentina are decreasing with each new placement, thus demonstrating the growing interest of international investors (despite the emerging increase in the cost of dollar loans in the global economy) in Argentine assets. In addition, the regime of restrictions on foreign exchange transactions, which had been in effect since 2011, was abolished. The national currency was "sent to free float". In addition, the government abolished capital controls, providing foreign investors with guarantees for the withdrawal of profits.

In order to enhance the interaction between the state and business, including foreign, to solve socially significant tasks, the Law on Public-Private Partnership was adopted in November 2016 (Law 27.328, Ley de Participación Público Privada). This measure is designed to ensure the growth of investments in the project in the field of infrastructure, technology, energy and housing construction.

In 2016, during a visit to Argentina, former US President B. Obama signed a Framework agreement on trade and Investment (Trade and Investment Framework Agreement, TIFA), which provides for the expansion of cooperation in trade, economic and investment spheres.

Dynamics, volumes, sectoral and regional structure, sources of foreign investment, their role in the economy of Argentina

According to the data of the National Institute of Statistics and Population Census (Instituto Nacional de Estadisticas y Censos) for 9 months of 2016 (the latest published data), the total volume of investments amounted to 4.8 billion US dollars, which is 50% lower than in 2015 — 9.6 billion US dollars. According to estimates of local analytical companies, the final figure for the year will be approximately 6 billion US dollars.

At the same time, according to analysts, comparing 2015 and 2016 is not entirely correct due to the fact that in 2015 there was a fixed exchange rate of the national currency, as well as capital flow control. Thus, foreign companies, due to the lack of an opportunity to withdraw funds received in the form of profits or dividends from the country, reinvested them inside the country.

A negative trend in the inflow of foreign direct investment is observed in the whole region. By the end of 2016, the total volume of FDI in LAC countries fell by 19%.

At the beginning of 2016, the government began active activities to attract investments from large multinational companies. During the World Economic Forum in Davos, M. Macri noted that the country expects about 20 billion US dollars of foreign investment to enter the economy this year. At the end of 2016, the largest foreign companies, such as Siemens, Dow Chemical, Shell, IBM they have indicated their interest in making multibillion-dollar investments in the country's economy.

At the same time, according to analysts of the Moody's rating agency, the lack of FDI inflows expected by the government is due to the parliamentary elections. International investors are waiting for clearer signals regarding the continuity and preservation of the dynamics of the policy pursued by M. Macri's cabinet following the election results.

The main directions of state policy in the field of small and medium-sized enterprises

State support for small businesses is carried out in accordance with Law No. 24.467 of March 23, 1995. "On Small and Medium-sized Enterprises", which defines the main provisions in relation to these enterprises, other laws issued on its basis, decrees of the President of Argentina, resolutions of Ministries and departments, as well as regulatory legal acts of the provinces of Argentina.

In the current legislation of Argentina, SMEs are understood as enterprises where the number of employees does not exceed 40 people and the annual turnover does not exceed the established volume for three consecutive years.

The number of employees of an SME is determined taking into account all its employees, including those working under civil contracts and part-time, taking into account the actual time worked, as well as employees of representative offices, branches and other separate divisions of the enterprise. In case of exceeding the established number, the specified enterprise is deprived of the benefits provided for by the current legislation.

Since March 2016, maximum annual sales volumes have been established to classify enterprises in various sectors of the economy as SMEs.

Maximum annual sales volumes for classifying enterprises of various sectors of the economy as SMEs, in thousands of Argentine pesos


Agricultural industry

Industry and mining





2 000

7 500

9 000

2 500

3 500


13 000

45 500

55 000

15 000

22 500

Average (category 1)

100 000

360 000

450 000

125 000

180 000

Average (category 2)

160 000

540 000

650 000

180 000

270 000


In Argentina, SMEs are divided by the number of employees.

The maximum number of employees for assigning enterprises of various sectors of the economy to the categories of SMEs, in the number of people



Wholesale trade

Services for production

Software and information technology





















The level of SME development in Argentina is characterized by about 800 thousand manufacturing enterprises, 4.2 million jobs and 70% of employment in the commercial sector.

In Argentina, centralized State support for SMEs is carried out, the nature and scope of which are determined by the Secretariat for Small and Medium-sized Enterprises of the Ministry of Production of Argentina, the National Bank of Argentina, the National Fund for SME Support, the Mutual Guarantee Society. Priority is currently given to the development of export-oriented SMEs. More than 220 thousand enterprises enjoy benefits for SMEs.

The main SME support programs are "ProArgentina" and "Exportar".

Small and medium-sized business Internationalization program
A program of internationalization of small and medium-sized businesses is being implemented, which provides comprehensive support to exporters of goods and services, ranging from assistance in creating Internet pages to participation in international exhibitions. The Inter-American Development Bank (IADB) has allocated a loan of US$ 14 million for the implementation of this program.

Local Production Systems Support Program
Under the auspices of the Ministry of Industry, there is a program to support local production systems aimed at technical and economic assistance to cooperatives and groups of small and medium-sized businesses.

The work is carried out in 4 directions:

  • A subsidy for hiring a supervisor who will prepare business and investment plans and monitor their implementation. The contract is concluded for a period of 1 year. The first 6 months of the curator's work are paid in full at the expense of the program funds, the remaining six months — by 50%. If, according to experts, the implementation of the project requires longer deadlines, it is possible to extend the contract up to 18 months. In this case, the first 6 months of salary expenses are reimbursed in full, another 6 months — by 75% and the last 6 months — by 50%.
  • Groups of SMEs can submit an investment plan for a new project to receive additional subsidies, which should reach from 30% to 40% of the project cost, taking into account the contribution of SMEs own funds in the amount of 400 to 600 thousand pesos.
  • Groups of SMEs can submit a plan to strengthen and develop the current project.
  • The program for the early launch of scientific enterprises and laboratories in industrial parks, which provides for compensation of up to 40% of the costs of opening the project.

Previously, there was no special (preferential) taxation regime for small businesses in Argentina, but since October 2016, a number of tax benefits have been introduced for SMEs, in particular:

  • VAT can be paid within 90 days;
  • the tax on the minimum estimated income is abolished;
  • income tax can be reimbursed in the amount of 100% for micro and small enterprises, and in the amount of 50% for medium-sized enterprises of category 1.

There is no special law on the territory of Argentina regulating the procedure for conducting inspections of the fulfillment by SMEs in the implementation of their activities of mandatory requirements for goods (works, services) established by regulatory legal acts.

According to the current legislation, in Argentina, all legal entities and individuals, including SMEs engaged in a specific type of activity, must necessarily be entered in the relevant register of producers, which is maintained by an authorized state body. According to the provisions regulating the activities of registration authorities, they have the right to carry out inspections and monitor the activities of legal entities and individuals. In case of violation of the established norms and regulations in force in a particular field of activity, a whole set of established administrative or judicial measures is applied to the perpetrators. If the person concerned does not agree with the measures taken, he has the right to appeal to the Court of Appeal with a corresponding complaint. The procedure for considering cases on complaints is regulated by the Civil Procedure Code.

Argentina's participation in multilateral international and regional economic organizations, integration and preferential trade agreements

Argentina is a member of the MERCOSUR regional trade and economic bloc (Mercado Común del Sur).

In 2016, due to non-compliance with the norms of the organization, Venezuela's membership was suspended, which was actively initiated by Argentina, among others. The main priority of the bloc was the rapprochement with the Pacific Alliance (Chile, Colombia, Mexico and Peru) and the restart of the negotiation process on a free trade agreement with the European Union. In addition, active work has begun on concluding framework trade agreements with the European Free Trade Association (EFTA), Canada and Japan.

Argentina is one of the active participants of the regional political and economic organization — the Union of South American Nations UNASUR (Union de Naciones Suramericanas). According to experts, the share of UNASUR countries accounts for 40% of the world's population, 40% of world trade turnover and 30% of the world economy.

Argentina is one of the most active participants in the World Trade Organization (WTO).

Within the WTO, Argentina is a member of the Kern Group on Agriculture, NAMA Group on Trade in Manufactured Goods, the G-20 group of developing countries, the Friends of Fish-FoFs group, which advocates the removal of subsidies in the fishing industry; the intellectual property group (Joint proposal in intellectual property).

Argentina actively uses WTO mechanisms to protect its national interests. In particular, the country quite often initiates anti-dumping investigations against foreign suppliers of metals, fertilizers, food and consumer goods.

In October 2016 The arbitration panel of the World Trade Organization has recognized the anti-dumping duties imposed by the EU on imports of biodiesel from Argentina as inconsistent with the current norms of the organization. In particular, it was recognized that the amount of the specified fee (24.6%) is overstated, and the method of its calculation does not correspond to practice. In this regard, the organization issued recommendations to the European Union on bringing the duty in line with the WTO rules of the Anti-Dumping Agreement and the General Agreement on Tariffs and Trade of 1994.

Argentina is not a member of the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD) and has not applied for membership.

To the content

Trade and economic cooperation of the Republic of Belarus with Argentina

There is a downward trend in imports to Argentina. A severe economic crisis continues to operate in the country. Against the background of a significant increase in inflation and interest rates, as well as a decrease in the exchange rate of the peso to the US dollar (more than twice), there was a sharp drop in domestic demand. Record interest rates and limited access to credit resources have led to a significant decline in the economic activity of small and medium-sized enterprises, which are the backbone of the Argentine economy. Buying foreign currency has become more difficult for local importers.

In 2021, the trade turnover between Belarus and Argentina amounted to $ 136.8 million (141.6% compared to 2020). Exports amounted to $ 14.8 million (an increase of 18.9 times), imports – $ 122.0 million (127.2%). The foreign trade balance was negative in the amount of $ 107.2 million. Exports of services to Argentina in 2021 amounted to 257.7 thousand dollars (124.0% by 2020). 

Dynamics of Belarus' trade with Argentina (million dollars)


Trade turnover





























Prospects for the export of Belarusian goods and services, including high-tech, to Argentina

The main Belarusian exports to the Argentine market are mineral fertilizers. The peculiarities of the Argentine official statistics do not allow us to determine the domestic consumption of these products and, as a result, the share of participation of Belarusian companies.

Belarusian goods with high added value are likely to be in demand on the Argentine market:

  • forage harvesters (8433);
  • acrylic harness (5501);
  • fiberglass (7019);
  • agricultural machinery (8432).

However, for the supply of these products, it is important to attract export financing.

An important condition for entering the Argentine market with machine—building and high-tech products is the presence of a local profile partner to promote products and/or organize joint production: at the first stage - assembly, followed by increased localization and technology transfer.

To the content

Customs tariff and non-tariff regulation

Export-import operations in Argentina are regulated by the Argentine Customs Code, presidential decrees, as well as resolutions of the Ministry of Production.

The Customs Code is based on the provisions of the Convention on the Harmonization and Simplification of Customs Systems, signed in Quito in May 1973. The Code regulates almost all issues related to export-import operations: various customs regimes, fees and taxes, restrictions and prohibitions on exports, imports and other issues.

Customs duties are collected in accordance with the Nomenclature of Customs Duties and Tariffs. The change of the customs tariff is made by presidential decree on the proposal of the Government and interested ministries and departments.

Argentina's customs and tariff policy is designed to promote the country's integration into the world economy and deepen trade and economic cooperation with MERCOSUR member countries.

Measures are being taken to support national exports, protect the interests of national producers in the implementation of import operations.

The principles of State regulation of foreign trade activities in Argentina are the protection by the State of the rights of participants in foreign trade activities, as well as the rights and legitimate interests of national producers of goods and services. 

Currently, President of Argentina M. Macri is taking measures to liberalize the economy and stimulate foreign trade. Thus, since the end of 2015, the application of the rule "compensation of export supplies by imports" ("1:1") has been discontinued, and currency and export restrictions have been almost completely lifted. The Government has also taken separate measures to mitigate the import regime. In particular, import declarations were cancelled in December 2015 and a Unified Import Monitoring System (SIMI — Sistema Integral de Monitoreo de Importaciones) was introduced. In accordance with the rules of this system, in order to collect statistical information, all imported goods are subject to registration by obtaining an import license in automatic or non-automatic mode, which is valid for 180 days from the date of its receipt.

In particular, certain goods, the import of which requires prior approval and which belong to such categories as cars, automotive components, motorcycles, chemical products, textiles, clothing, shoes and other products, are subject to manual licensing. Depending on the code of the commodity nomenclature, it is required to fill out one of 15 different forms for obtaining a license, each of which implies providing information about the imported goods, as well as about the exporter. In addition, import transactions worth $2 million or more require prior approval, regardless of the category of imported goods. It should also be noted that in 2013 only 600 commodity items required obtaining a non-automatic license, while at present their number is about 1,500. At the same time, according to Argentine experts, the mechanism for issuing non-automatic licenses is not transparent and significantly hinders the development of trade.

In March 2016, the Argentine authorities announced the adoption of additional measures to facilitate imports. In addition to increasing the validity period of import licenses from 90 to 180 days, a significant number of commodity items that are not produced in the country, including copper wire, pumps and pneumatic tools, certain types of fans, components for telecommunications and medical equipment, were excluded from the list of goods requiring licenses in non-automatic mode. Such goods will be imported into the country under automatic licenses. At the same time, the list of goods requiring a non-automatic license has been replenished with certain products of product categories that are "sensitive" for the Argentine industry and require prior import approval.

All necessary documents containing data on the quantity and content of imported products must be submitted to the Ministry of Industry of Argentina 10 days before customs procedures. At the same time, these documents must be executed in Spanish or accompanied by a translation by a certified translator.

In addition to non-tariff restrictions, the growth of imports to Argentina is constrained by customs duties, taxes and other charges levied upon the import of goods. As a member of MERCOSUR, Argentina applies a single duty for non-MERCOSUR countries. The amount of the specified duty is from 0 to 20% for most goods. For individual products of the automotive industry, the duty reaches up to 35%.

In addition to import duties, the following fees are charged:

  • VAT. Is 10.5% or 21% of the CIF price. For industrial goods, VAT is 5.5% or 10% of the CIF price;
  • additional VAT. It is charged at the rate of 20% or 10% for goods subject to basic VAT at the rate of 21% or 10.5%, respectively;
  • statistical collection. It is charged at the rate of 0.5% of the CIF price from all products with rare exceptions;
  • income tax. Is 6% of the CIF price%;
  • tax on gross income. Charged at a rate of 2.5% of the CIF price;
  • a tax on domestic trade applied to the import of cigarettes, alcoholic beverages, tires, fuels and lubricants, luxury goods, household appliances, cars and other goods. The amount of the rate is calculated according to the formula based on the tax rate established by the tax regime of the country.

In addition to the national taxes and fees listed above, there may be:

  • consular fee;
  • freight tax;
  • contribution to the export development fund;
  • the fee for the work of customs during non—working hours (in total - about 4% of the value of the goods).

Thus, the aggregate of all duties and charges often exceeds half of the value of imported goods.

For the import of trade samples and other promotional products, a temporary import permit is required. At the same time, such products are not subject to taxes and duties, since they are not intended for sale, as the corresponding marking placed on it should indicate.

Resolution No. 2603 of the General Customs Service of Argentina dated May 5, 2009 approved the "Norms of customs control in the Customs services of the MERCOSUR countries" adopted by the Joint Commission on Trade of the MERCOSUR countries.

In order to properly control the implementation of export-import operations, the State establishes special additional requirements, conditions and/or restrictions that apply to the supply of certain groups of specific goods:

  • wild plants, animals and products made from them;
  • works of art and antiques;
  • weapon;
  • dual-use materials and products;
  • seafood (shrimp);
  • individual agricultural plants;
  • food products of plant and animal origin;
  • narcotic and psychotropic substances.

Non-tariff restrictions have been introduced on the import of used goods into the territory of Argentina, as well as a number of specific goods.

To the content

Measures of State support for national exports and investments

Non-financial measures

In 2016, the Government of Argentina established the Argentine Agency for the Promotion of Investment and International Trade (hereinafter referred to as the Agency), which is designed to become a "single window" for investors in the Argentine economy and exporters.

The Agency has the following tasks:

  •  attract foreign investment in strategic sectors of the economy;
  •  to assist Argentine companies in entering foreign markets;
  •  improve the business climate;
  •  prepare detailed market reviews that may be useful for foreign investors and Argentine companies.

The Agency operates the Invest Argentina Fund, whose activities are aimed at attracting investments, as well as the ExportAr Fund (hereinafter referred to as the Fund), established in 1993 and became the basis for the creation of the Agency.

To provide targeted support , the Fund has branch divisions:

  •  food industry and agriculture;
  •  industry;
  •  innovations and services;
  •  objects of creativity and art.

The Fund provides the following types of support to Argentine enterprises:

  • participation in international exhibitions.

Every year, the Foundation provides the work of the stand "Argentina" at 160 international exhibitions. The stand allows more than 2,000 Argentine companies to present their products and services. Representatives of the Foundation act as an intermediary between the organizers of the exhibition and the Argentine manufacturers, assisting them at the stages of preparation, participation and establishment of business contacts after the exhibition. In addition, it is more profitable for Argentine companies to participate in the exhibition organized through the Fund than individually, thanks to the Fund's subsidies provided by the Fund to companies in the amount depending on the size of the enterprise (micro, small, medium or large). At the same time, the products of these enterprises must be exclusively Argentine;

  • conducting a business mission.

The Foundation provides organizational support for conducting collective business missions of Argentine companies abroad in order to hold meetings with potential partners;

  • organization of round tables.

The Foundation provides round tables, as a rule, in Argentina "on the sidelines" of international events — fairs, forums and exhibitions. This allows Argentine companies, first of all, to establish contact with a potential client, while avoiding significant costs and with the organizational support of the Fund;

  • creation of a business program for foreign visits.

For a fee, the Foundation provides institutional support to Argentine companies, providing them with the most effective program of a visit to a country where it is necessary to find importers or distributors of their products.

The algorithm of actions for obtaining the service is as follows:

  • the company applies to the Fund with a request for the provision of services;
  • The Foundation establishes initial contact with the company in order to determine the most suitable market for the product, and then the Foundation requests from the Argentine embassies abroad a market overview with a list of potential partners;
  • the list of potential partners is transmitted to the company to determine which of them it seems appropriate to hold meetings with during a foreign visit;
  • as a result, the Foundation coordinates the time and place of meetings, and also provides the company with a business guide, including, among other things, general information about the market, useful information about the country of the visit, foreign trade data of the country of the visit, a certificate on bilateral relations between Argentina and the country of the visit, as well as a description of the local specifics of business turnover.

In addition, the Agency, together with the ICBC Chinese Bank Foundation (hereinafter referred to as the ICBC Foundation), are implementing a Program to form export consortia aimed at creating and developing "export groups" (hereinafter referred to as Export groups) from among small and medium—sized enterprises in order to facilitate their entry into foreign markets. Export groups, coordinated by industry specialists, combine complementary enterprises in order to jointly achieve not only a more dynamic entry into the foreign market and ensure their permanent presence there, but also to increase the efficiency of product deliveries by dividing the costs of export procedures. Thus, realizing that it is often difficult for small and medium-sized enterprises to develop an export strategy, the Agency helps them get into competitive foreign markets and gain a foothold in them, using joint efforts in the most effective way. For example, Export groups can divide the cost of participation in a foreign exhibition among their participants.

Financial measures

​​​​​In order to stimulate exports, the government devalued the peso in 2016, abolished or reduced export duties on a number of agricultural products, and also relaxed the rules of currency regulation. In addition, the largest Argentine banks provide exporters of domestic products with various credit instruments for making deliveries, as well as a number of other measures that stimulate national exports.

In Argentina, there is a full or partial exemption from the payment of existing taxes and fees related to exports. In particular, Presidential Decree No. 690/2002 is in force, according to which full or partial refund of internal taxes (VAT and other taxes) that were paid at various stages of production and sale of goods produced in the country intended for export is provided.

The "DrawBack" mode also works. This regime is that it allows exporters of goods to refund VAT and other fees paid when importing products, which were then used in the production and sale of export goods. The general provisions of this regime are defined in Decree of the President of Argentina No. 177 of January 25, 1985, with subsequent amendments and additions.

The issues of insurance of export credits against special and trade risks are regulated by Law No. 20.299 of April 24, 1973 . and Decrees of the President of Argentina No. 3145/73 and No. 1803/94.

The current legislation provides that special risks, that is, risks that are not insured by insurance companies operating in Argentina, are assumed by the State.

The special risks specified by the law include:

  • natural disasters;
  • political events in the importing country (wars, revolutions, nationalizations);
  • measures taken by the governments of states that prevent the importer from fulfilling its obligations (import bans, currency transfers);
  • failure to comply with payment terms if the importer or its guarantor is a state or a state-owned company.

Investment support

Argentina has a policy of attracting investments, including in the agricultural sector, in which the investor bears significant risks from the point of view of the climate impact on the implementation of the project. An investor in Argentina is provided with a wide range of investment opportunities: from the acquisition of small farms and the sowing of several hectares to investments in large enterprises of the food industry and the construction of processing facilities.

Potential investors are offered a wide range of options that differ in the period of return on investment, their volume and riskiness:

  • For a short period, up to 15 months, investors are invited to invest in crop production. For those who are ready to invest for 2-3 years, projects in the field of cattle breeding are offered. And longer-term and less risky investment projects involving the cultivation of olives and fruits are implemented through special funds.;
  • Options for investors in agriculture also vary in volume. Projects in the field of crop production, involving the sowing of crops, require investments of about 10 — 50 million US dollars, for other types of activities, the volume of required investments is greater. In the field of crop production, there are many enterprises that practice attracting investors, while in the field of cattle breeding this practice is less common.;
  • Investors are trying to attract to crop projects for sowing crops with a return on investment of 20-25% per annum in US dollars. At the same time, the more expensive lease of fertile lands that do not have restrictions on crops for sowing reduces profitability by up to 15%, but with it the risk. On the contrary, lower-quality land is cheaper, the risk becomes greater, but the profitability can reach higher values.;
  • The profitability of projects in the field of cattle breeding is 30-35% in Argentine pesos. This indicator is lower than in crop production, but the risk is much less. The investor is invited to increase the profitability of the project by moving from the stage of cultivation to fattening livestock.;
  • There are also various investment projects in the field of winemaking, cultivation of olives, lemons, currants and pecans. Such projects attract with their profitability, but the return on investment period is at least 5 years. Such projects are implemented, as a rule, according to the scheme of trust ownership and often require investments in the land on which the projects will be implemented. In this regard, the company Faro Capital, which is the main Argentine enterprise in the field of pecan cultivation on an area of more than 1200 hectares, offers small investors to purchase small farms that are part of a single production pool. The profitability is estimated at 14%, and the required amount of capital investment is about 150 thousand US dollars.;
  • Investors are also invited to purchase land for their subsequent lease. The rate of return of such projects is 1-3% per annum. Experts note that with the arrival of the new government, the agricultural sector is again becoming attractive to investors. With due attention and professionalism, the agricultural sector can represent a good opportunity for risk sharing.

To the content

Special economic zones, peculiarities of their functioning and administration

In accordance with the legislation of Argentina, special zones may be created on its national territory, which are not subject to the provisions of the current Customs Code. Their legal regulation is carried out by special laws.

Such territories include free zones, special economic zones and special customs territories.

Currently , Law No. 24.331 of May 18 , 1994 is in force . "On Free Zones", which defines the general provisions, objectives, procedure of activity and other issues related to free trade zones.

In accordance with the Law, free zones are designed to promote the economic development of territories by increasing the number of jobs and attracting capital investments. Their activities are carried out in accordance with the country's trade policy aimed at increasing the competitiveness of the economy and its full inclusion in the process of regional integration.

The investment policy of Argentina, including the creation of free zones, is primarily aimed at ensuring equal protection of the rights, interests and property of investment entities, regardless of ownership forms. At the same time, Argentina's economic policy is aimed at ensuring the principle of public-private partnership, which consists primarily in providing programmatic measures of financial and material support to business entities that will carry out their activities on the territory of free zones.

The subjects of investment activity in the territory of free zones can be:

  • investors;
  • customers;
  • performers of works;
  • users of investment activity objects;
  • legal entities and other participants in the investment process.

Investors can be:

  • citizens;
  • enterprises;
  • business associations and legal entities;
  • foreign individuals and legal entities;
  • States and international organizations.

State regulation of free zones is carried out by the Ministry of Economy of Argentina. At the same time, the Federal Agency for State Revenue is authorized to regulate and control the activities of free zones by issuing regulations on the import and export of goods in relation to these zones.

As a general rule, the export of goods from the free zone and the import of goods into its territory are not subject to prohibitions and restrictions of an economic nature that apply to the rest of the country. In some cases, by a special decision of the government, bans of a non-economic nature may be introduced for a free zone.

Goods imported into the territory of the free zone are exempt from import duties and other charges, with the exception of fees for services provided. Goods exported from the territory of the free zone to other countries are not subject to taxes, except for fees for services provided. At the same time, in the free zone, the goods are exempt from paying taxes in force on the territory of the country for the provision of basic services (gas, electricity, drinking water, telecommunications, etc.).

There are no special restrictions on transactions with currency, securities and precious metals in the free zone. The same financial and exchange laws apply in its territory as in the common customs territory.

Storage of goods, trade operations, provision of services, as well as production activities can be carried out in free zones. At the same time, the main purpose of such activity is the export of goods. In free zones, it is allowed to manufacture industrial goods that are not produced in the common customs territory in order to import them into the specified territory.

All types of goods may be imported into free zones, with the exception of weapons, ammunition and other goods that infringe on morality, health, safety and protection of flora, fauna and the environment.

All industrial goods undergo customs clearance in accordance with the general provisions.

The forms of production activity can be: 

  • recycling;
  • production;
  • any other transformation and improvement of the product.

The creation of the necessary infrastructure is carried out at the expense of the concessionaire. The right to operate a free zone is granted through public tenders (national or international) carried out in accordance with the conditions established by the Bidding Commission.

In accordance with the law, the concessionaire or concessionaires have the following basic rights and obligations:

  • create the infrastructure necessary for the normal functioning of the zone;
  • to lease plots for the construction of buildings intended for various types of activities;
  • enter into contracts related to their activities;
  • design and build buildings and structures for the implementation of various types of activities permitted on the territory of the zone;
  • to amend internal charters with the permission of the Control Committee and in accordance with the current legislation;
  • receive the provision of water, electricity, gas, telecommunications, heat, as well as other services required to work in the free zone;
  • send all necessary information about the activities of the free zone, as well as statistical data to the Control Committee;
  • be responsible for violating the customs legislation and the provisions of the free zone;
  • pay the cost of customs control of the zone in accordance with the rules established by the Control Committee and the National Customs Administration;
  • The regulatory authorities of Argentina exercise appropriate control on the territory of the free zone in accordance with the current legislation of Argentina.

The Customs Code of Argentina also provides for the possibility of creating special customs territories. The main difference between special customs territories and free zones is mainly in the amount of duties levied during import and export operations, as well as in the establishment of special economic regimes regulated by separate legislative acts to stimulate exporters.

For example, in accordance with Law No. 19640 of May 16, 1972, the territory was defined, which received the status of a "Special Customs and Tax Zone". According to this law, a system of tax and customs privileges was established on the national territory of Tierra del Fuego, Antarctica and the South Atlantic Islands. All import-export operations carried out in this territory are not subject to duties and taxes, including taxes on sea freight. All individuals and legal entities are exempt from national taxes. In particular, the following taxes are not levied:

  • income tax;
  • sales tax (domestic trade);
  • income tax;
  • tax on the free transfer of property rights;
  • national emergency taxes on land suitable for agricultural activities;
  • tax on the sale, purchase or exchange of currency;
  • any other national taxes that may take place in the future.

To the content


This article has been prepared on the basis of information provided by the National Centre for Marketing and Price Study of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, and the Embassy of the Republic of Belarus in the Argentine Republic, and taken from public sources. The information presented herein is for informative purposes only. In this regard, it may be useful for the companies, which have been working in Argentina for a long time, as well as for those, which are going to enter this market. Any questions, feedbacks and comments concerning this article are welcome. All of them will be fully considered and taken into account, if possible. If you have any information that may be interesting and useful for the visitors of this page, please write to us.

When using the materials of this article, the link to is obligatory.

Best wishes,

Administration of

Back to Country Guidebooks List