Custom Report on Argentina
The people of Argentina are highly urbanized. About 80 percent of Argentineans live in towns with populations of 2,000 or more. Some 13 million people—or about one-third of the population—live in the greater Buenos Aires metropolitan area. Because of this urban concentration, the nation’s population density is quite low. Argentina ranks number 200 in the world in terms of population density with only 13.42 people per square kilometer (34.76 per square mile). In comparison, the population density of the United States is 28.4 per square kilometer (73.56 per square mile).
6,608,700 Europeans immigrated to Argentina. During the late 20th century, new groups of immigrants settled in the country, including those from Syria and Lebanon. Middle Eastern immigrants now number about 500,000. The nation continues to encourage immigration from Europe through a variety of programs. Argentina’s economy has performed well over the past few decades and the nation enjoys one of the highest standards of living in Latin America. In 2000, the GDP per capitawas US$10,000. About half of the people consider themselves to be middle-class. In addition, the literacy rate is 96.2 percent. Because of the relative wealth of the society, Argentina has recently experienced new waves of immigration, mainly from other Latin American countries.
Since the early 1990s, agricultural production has increased dramatically, although there was a brief period of decline in 1999 when output fell by 4.7 percent. With that exception, production increased by an average of 10 percent per year during the 1990s. Lower demand for Argentine products by the nation’s MERCOSUR partners may continue to constrain exports, but new access to markets in Europe and the United States has provided outlets for increases in production. The main crops include bananas, barley, potatoes, rice, sugar cane, soy beans and soy bean oil, corn, wheat, lemon juice, and sunflower seed oil. On average, each year Argentina produces about 200,000 tons of cotton, although the domestic market only uses about 80,000 tons.
Total crop production in 1999 was 70.68 million metric tons. The largest crop yields were sugar cane at 19.4 million metric tons, soybeans at 18 million metric tons, wheat at 14.5 million metric tons, and corn at 13.18 million metric tons. The main livestock products include beef and veal, chicken, duck, goose, horse, lamb, pork, and turkey. Argentina’s geographic position makes it ideally suited for raising livestock. In most areas of the country, cattle and sheep may graze year round. Livestock accounts for about 85 percent of exports.