More information about Argentina is available on the Argentina Page and from other Department of State publications and other sources listed at the end of this fact sheet.
The United States and Argentina maintain a bilateral relationship based on deep economic ties and shared interests, including, democracy and human rights, counterterrorism and rule of law, improving citizen security, science, energy and technology infrastructure, people-to-people ties, and education.
A U.S. Presidential Delegation attended the December 2019 inauguration of the new president of Argentina, Alberto Fernandez. Members of the delegation met privately with President Fernandez to fortify the relationship between the United States and Argentina. The Fernandez administration has said it seeks a mature relationship with the United States based on shared interests.
Over the past few years, the U.S. government worked to strengthen counterterrorism cooperation throughout the Western Hemisphere, and Argentina has been a key ally in this effort, taking on a leadership role in the region on counterterrorism issues. The United States helped develop the Western Hemisphere Counterterrorism Ministerial (WHCM), and Argentina has been a leading participant in all three Ministerials, including hosting the second one. During the second WHCM, hosted by Argentina in Buenos Aires in 2019, the U.S. Secretary of State commemorated the 25th anniversary of the Iran-backed Hizballah attack on the Asociación Mutual Israelita Argentina Jewish community center in Buenos Aires, which killed 85 people and injured hundreds more.
In 2019, as a step to counter terrorism and as a way of honoring those affected by the attack, Argentina designated the entirety of Hizballah as a terrorist organization, the first country in Latin America to do so. Argentina motivated a number of other countries in the Hemisphere to do the same. In July 2020, Argentina extended the time period of its Hizballah designation.
Argentina and the United States collaborate on crime countering initiatives, bilaterally as well as in the region. Together, we helped direct the formation of the Regional Security Mechanism, and participated actively in the first meeting of that group. Argentina sent a complement of its most capable experts to participate as well as build capacity on the margins of the meeting. The United States works with Argentine counterparts to assist in their anti-crime and counterterrorism efforts through legal, financial, and law enforcement tools.
Coordinating on Fight Against the Pandemic
The United States is working closely with the Argentine government and partners to combat the pandemic and plan for recovery. The United States is working with Argentine authorities to coordinate provision of personal protective equipment (PPE), including sourcing PPE from U.S. companies operating in Latin America. Both countries are working to ensure that PPE is available to frontline workers, especially medical staff. The United States has donated eye protection, N95 masks, gloves, and scrubs to Argentina and financed testing kits. The U.S. government is providing funding through the Migration and Refugee Account to help with humanitarian assistance and COVID-19 response efforts in Argentina, a host country for refugees. The total value of this assistance is $300,000 as of June 2020.
In mid-March, the Argentine government swiftly imposed orders which had a significant effect in reducing deaths related to COVID-19 pandemic. Throughout 2020, Argentina continues to implement stay at home measures and a stimulus package that includes assistance for workers in the informal economy. Argentina is receiving financial assistance from the World Bank and the Inter-American Development Bank to address health effects and economic impacts of COVID-19.
U.S. Assistance to Argentina
The Department of State provided more than $6 million in bilateral assistance to Argentina in FY 2018 and FY 2019. This funding promotes regional stability and democracy as well as non-proliferation and nuclear security through cooperation on export controls and border security. The United States and Argentina also cooperate on economic revitalization and public security. In supporting Argentina’s counternarcotics law enforcement and counterterrorism capabilities, the Department of State’s Bureau of International Narcotics and Law Enforcement Affairs implements programs to foster law enforcement and justice cooperation and institutional capacity building, and this has strengthened the ability of both governments to respond to shared security interests in the Western Hemisphere. The Department of State’s Bureau of Political and Military Affairs provides military education and training to Argentina’s military personnel. Additionally, U.S. Department of Labor programs help the government and civil society combat child and forced labor, increase worker safety, and expand apprenticeship opportunities for at-risk youth.
Bilateral Economic Relations
The United States enjoys a trade surplus with Argentina, and is Argentina’s number three goods and services trading partner (behind Brazil and China). U.S. goods and services trade with Argentina totaled $23.4 billion in 2019. U.S. exports to Argentina include machinery, mineral fuels, aircraft, and plastics. U.S. imports from Argentina include aluminum, wine, and mineral fuels. There are more than 300 U.S. companies doing business in Argentina, employing more than 150,000 workers. The United States is the largest foreign investor in Argentina, with approximately $10.7 billion (stock) foreign direct investment in 2019, according to the Department of Commerce. The Energy Resource Governance Initiative met in September 2019 where, as a key participant, Argentina shared challenges and opportunities for meeting the anticipated demand for energy resource minerals. The United States and Argentina signed an Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) under the Growth in the Americas/America Crece initiative to increase cooperation on energy and infrastructure development in 2018.
In support of the Women’s Global Development and Prosperity Initiative (W-GDP), a high-level U.S. interagency delegation visited Argentina to support empowerment of women and promote small businesses and entrepreneurs, which are essential for creating economic growth and security. On the visit, they met with both senior government officials and civil society stakeholders. Through W-GDP, the United States aims to economically empower 50 million women across the developing world by 2025, including through the 2X Americas initiative, which seeks to mobilize $1 billion for women-owned, women-led, and women-supporting businesses in Latin America, including Argentina.
In 2016, the United States and Argentina started establishing new mechanisms and agreements to improve the business climate. These include the Trade and Investment Framework Agreement (TIFA) for interagency discussion of trade and commercial issues, an MOU supporting small and medium enterprise development, a Digital Economy Working Group, a Commercial Dialogue between the Department of Commerce and the Ministry of Production, a Forum on Innovation and Creativity for Economic Development (i.e., intellectual property), and a bilateral Tax Information Exchange Agreement.
The United States and Argentina cooperate closely on a range of binational educational activities at the basic and higher education levels. The Binational Fulbright Commission coordinates the exchange of students, teachers, and researchers. The United States contributes approximately $1.2 million annually, and the Argentine government contributed $10 million in 2017.
U.S. government and science cooperation with Argentina remains strong, with the U.S. National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA) at the forefront of collaboration. In 2018, NASA supported Argentina’s work in the launch of its most recent SAOCOM satellite. In December 2017, NASA was in southern Argentina, collecting Antarctic data for Operation IceBridge, when the Argentine ARA San Juan submarine went missing off the Atlantic coast. NASA immediately redirected its P-3B Orion research aircraft, which represented the first international support to the search-and-rescue mission. In September 2017, NASA partnered with the Argentine space agency (CONAE) to hold the first-ever regional Disaster Risk Reduction Seminar, which brought together earth observation scientists, emergency responders, NGOs, and government representatives to address problems with, and identify solutions to, disaster response mechanisms.
Argentina’s Membership in International Organizations
Argentina is an active member of the United Nations, the OAS, the G20, and other international organizations. Argentine Rafael Grossi was elected IAEA Director General in 2019. Argentina held the G20 Presidency in 2018 and hosted over 45 G20 meetings that year. Argentina also hosted the World Youth Olympics in October 2018. Argentina held the Financial Action Task Force presidency for 2017-2018 and served as host of the World Trade Organization Ministerial in December 2017.
Argentina is party to the Inter-American Treaty of Reciprocal Assistance (also known as the Rio Treaty). In September 2019, the states parties to the Rio Treaty initiated a ministerial process to implement measures to address the worsening crisis in Venezuela, though the Fernandez administration has been critical of the use of sanctions. Argentina is also a member of the Lima Group and International Contact Group to address issues in Venezuela and serves as a host to over 150,000 Venezuelan refugees.
Principal U.S. embassy officials are listed in the Department’s Key Officers List.
More information about Argentina is available from the Department of State and other sources, some of which are listed here: