Argentina: Political and Economic Conditions and U.S. Relations [January 13, 2006]   [open pdf - 63KB]

"With the restructuring of over $100 billion in defaulted bond debt in June 2005, Argentina appears to have emerged from its economic and political crisis. While the country was under considerable stress in 2001 and 2002, the democratic political system weathered the crisis. President Néstor Kirchner, elected in 2003, has made bold policy moves in the areas of human rights, institutional reform, and economic policy that have helped restore Argentines' faith in democracy. The October 2005 legislative elections demonstrated strong support for President Kirchner. Economic growth has rebounded, from a decline of almost 11% in 2002 to 8.8% in 2003, 9% in 2004, and over 8% in 2005. In January 2006, Argentina paid off its $9.5 billion debt to the International Monetary Fund (IMF), a popular move, but one that critics have questioned for its economic wisdom. Looking ahead, the government faces such challenges as controlling inflation, reducing poverty, and building the political consensus needed to ensure sustainable economic growth and financial stability. As the 109th Congress begins its second session, issues of concern to Congress will likely include continued cooperation with Argentina on counter-terrorism issues and progress in Argentina's investigation of the 1994 Argentine-Israeli Mutual Association bombing. For additional information, see CRS [Congressional Research Service] Report RL32637, 'Argentina's Sovereign Debt Restructuring', by J. F. Hornbeck."

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CRS Report for Congress, RS21113
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