Argentina Culture and Traditions
The cultural life in Argentina is diverse but strongly concentrated in Buenos Aires. One of the world’s foremost opera stages is the Teatro Colón in Buenos Aires. Culturally, Argentina is otherwise most famous for tango. It was born as a dance just before the turn of the 20th century. Among the most famous tango singers are Carlos Gardel (1890–1935) and Susana Rinaldi. One of the most famous orchestras is Sexteto Mayor. Singer Mercedes Sosa (1935–2009) was one of the foremost interpreters of Argentine and Latin American folk music. But tango has continued to develop and today there is talk of different kinds of “new tango” with groups such as Gotan Project and Bajofondo.
The film industry reached its peak in the 1930s and 1940s. A pioneer in cartooning, Quirino Cristiani, came from Argentina. Among other things, he made the first animated sound film Peludópolis, from 1931. The Swedish-born Leopoldo Torre Nilsson, active in the 1960s, is considered a forerunner of several directors, including Luis Puenzo, Fernando Solanas and Maria Luisa Bemberg. The new names of Argentine film include Diego Lerman, Lucrecia Martel, Daniel Burman, Maxi Dubois and Juan José Campanella. The latter won an Oscar in 2010 for best foreign film with The Secret in Their Eyes.
In 2011, the Argentine Film Institute introduced new fees for major international films in order to protect the domestic film industry.
Leading authors include José Hernández, Jorge Luis Borges, Adolfo Bioy Casares, Ernesto Sábato, Julio Cortázar, Graciela Montes and Alejandra Pizarnik. A younger generation of writers such as Manuel Puig, Osvaldo Soriano and Alicia Partnoy have portrayed the years under military rule. Other important contemporary writers are Cristian Aliaga, César Aira, Federico Andahazi, Rodrigo Fresán, Claudia Piñiero, Samanta Schweblin, Graciela Montes and Ema Wolf. In 2013, the picture book artist Marisol Misenta received the Alma Prize (which is awarded in memory of Astrid Lindgren). Cartoonist Joaquín Salvador Lavado, creator of the cartoon character Mafalda, a six-year-old girl who looks at the world with a sharp and transparent gaze, and who hates soup and who dreams of world peace. He drew the series between 1964 and 1973.
Since the 19th century, Argentine visual art has drawn its inspiration from European currents; first the landscape painters, such as Prilidiano Pueyrredón, then Impressionists such as Martín Malharro. Ernesto de la Cárcova and the Nexus Group reflect the social changes of turn-of-the-century Buenos Aires. Cubism reached Argentina in the 1930s through, among others, Emilio Pettorutti. Among a number of other prominent artists are Leon Ferrari, Lino Enea Spilimbergo, Antonio Seguí and Carlos Alonso.
According to Countryaah, football and horse polo are the major national sports.
GDP fell by just over five percent in the first quarter of 2020
Official statistics show that Argentina’s GDP fell by just over five percent during the first quarter of 2020. Especially tough are industries such as fishing, the construction sector and various service industries. And that in a country that already suffered the world before the corona pandemic was in a deep economic crisis. In April, the economy had shrunk by 26 percent compared to the same month in 2019.
- Countryaah: Overview of the capital city of Argentina, including information about its population, economy, geography, history and map.
The deadline for the debt talks is extended
According to Abbreviationfinder, Argentina postpones the deadline set to agree with lenders on the amortization of part of the country’s debt ($ 66 billion) until June 19. The Argentine finance minister is preparing a new proposal for the lenders. In April, the Argentine government proposed that they be deferred with the repayments for three years, and that interest rates be lowered, something the lenders rejected.
Ex-President Macri is being investigated for espionage against political opponents
Prosecutors are opening an investigation into allegations against former President Mauricio Macri that between 2015 and 2019 he must have spied on his political opponent via the federal intelligence service AFI. It involves at least 80 people, both politicians and journalists, who have been monitored without court approval before a series of international summits in Argentina. President Alberto Fernández has previously commissioned the lawyer Cristina Caamaño, from the organization Justicia Legítima (Legitim justice) to conduct an audit of AFI. There are plans for a reorganization, and some of the appropriations now going to the intelligence service will be transferred to the president’s campaign to fight hunger in the country. At the beginning of June, it was reported that over 400 journalists, including several foreigners, plus about 100 academics,
Argentina sets up debt payment
Argentina would have today paid $ 500 million in interest on its bond debt, but cannot do so. At the same time, negotiations on a possible write-down with the lenders are continuing. The deadline for payment is now extended to June 2, which assessors interpret as a settlement is imminent.
Cordoba reintroduces harsh restrictions
Argentina’s second largest city of Córdoba, which had begun to ease the restrictions imposed to combat covid-19, is re-tightening some of them. This has happened since the spread of infection has regained momentum, with 55 new cases of illness in three days. Stricter rules will now apply in the city itself and not in the province of the same name.
Debt talks get stuck
The talks between Argentina and a number of private lenders on debt amortization have been stuck. Most of the lenders have said no to lowering the interest rate and deferring payments until 2023. The Argentine government says that it is not possible to pay the debt, but if it does not it will be difficult for Argentina to get new loans. The deadline for carrying the calls into port has now been postponed to May 22.
Argentina stops the flight until September 1
Argentina bans all commercial flights, both domestically and internationally, until 1 September. The airlines are not allowed to sell any air tickets at all for the next four months. Measures are taken to counteract the ongoing coronary pandemic.
The quarantine will be extended to 10 May
26th of April
Argentina extends the national quarantine introduced in mid-May in order to prevent the spread of the new corona virus. It will now be in effect until May 10. However, President Alberto Fernández announces some relief, the Argentines will be allowed to take short walks near their homes. Governors are also given the right to implement some relief within their own province. 3,780 cases of covid-19 and 185 deaths have so far been reported in Argentina.
Prison riots end after promises of talks
A riot breaks out in Villa Devoto Prison in Buenos Aires after a prison guard was found to be infected by the new corona virus. The prisoners get up on the prison roof, burn mattresses and throw projectiles at prison guards who try to stop the riot. The prisoners, who demand that those who are at risk of becoming seriously ill in covid-19 be allowed to serve their sentences at home and that the others must be protected from the disease, give up on promises of talks. The prison holds 2,200 prisoners. Similar riots broke out earlier this week in other Argentine prisons. In one of them, a prisoner was killed and 20 injured.
Negative growth in 2019 and tough 2020 await
Official statistics show that the Argentine economy shrank by just over 1 percent in the last quarter of 2019. This means that GDP fell by just over 2 percent throughout the year. The service sector, especially financial services, the construction industry, the retail trade and the manufacturing industry, is particularly hard hit. But everything is not night black, agriculture, mining and the hospitality industry showed positive figures. President Alberto Fernández intended to boost the economy through stimulus measures, which will now be difficult in light of the ongoing corona crisis.
Argentina faces a price hike on basic commodities
24th of March
The Argentine government presents a list of 2,300 items on which prices are now being introduced. It is primarily about food, hygiene products and various household goods. However, no drugs are included.
IMF: Argentina needs extensive support
Argentina will need extensive financial support, says IMF chief Kristalina Georgieva. Her statements come at the same time as the already deep economic crisis in the country is exacerbated by the ongoing pandemic. Earlier in March, the Argentine government submitted a proposal to renegotiate some of the country’s large debts. At the end of 2019, the debt represented 90 percent of the country’s GDP.
Argentina is quarantined
Argentina is now quarantining the entire country. Residents are not allowed to leave their homes except to buy food and medicines. It will be in effect until the end of March. The purpose is to reduce the spread of the new corona virus. Everyone who does not have socially necessary functions is encouraged to stay at home. In the capital Buenos Aires, certain bus traffic was maintained so that those who had to work could get to their jobs.
Argentina announces year-long health emergency
the 13th of March
President Alberto Fernández is taking a series of measures to prevent the new corona virus, which causes the covid-19 disease, from spreading in Argentina. He announces a twelve-month long-term health emergency, announces a 30-day long stop for air traffic from countries affected by the pandemic, and that everyone who exhibits symptoms should stay at home for 14 days, as well as anyone who comes home from travel in infected countries. In Jujuy and Misiones provinces, schools have been closed, but no closure of schools across the country does not appear to be relevant, at least not yet. To date, 33 cases of covid-19 have been discovered in Argentina, one person has died in the disease.
Fernandez promises legislative proposals on abortion within ten days
President Alberto Fernández says he will submit a bill within ten days to decriminalize abortion. As it is now, abortion is prohibited except after a rape (when the victim is mentally ill or has a mental disability) or when the woman’s life is in danger, but it happens that women are denied abortion even in these cases. The president also promises to invest in a program for sex education. In 2018, the Chamber of Deputies approved by a marginal margin another proposal to legalize abortion from the 14th week of pregnancy, but it was then voted down in the Senate. Unlike then, the initiative comes from the president, while Mauricio Macri, who was then president, opposed abortion (see August 9, 2018). The abortion debate resumed in 2019 when an eleven-year-old girl who was raped by her grandmother’s 65-year-old partner was redeemed by Caesarean section. The girl had asked to have an abortion, but the decision was delayed and several doctors refused to perform the procedure for conscience reasons. The Catholic Church opposes legalization of abortion.
New talks with the IMF on Argentina’s foreign debt
The Argentine government and the IMF agree to hold new consultations on how to manage Argentina’s large foreign debt. President Alberto Fernández hopes to renegotiate the terms of $ 195 billion of the total debt of $ 311 billion, including portions of the IMF crisis loan. The former Argentine government and the IMF agreed that Argentina could borrow $ 57 billion, but Fernández has declined the final payment of $ 13 billion.
The IMF urges private lenders to agree on debt amortization
The IMF agrees with the Argentine government’s analysis that the country’s foreign debt has become too large for the country to handle and that the loans must be renegotiated. At the end of 2019, it represented 90 percent of Argentina’s GDP, which was 13 percent higher than expected. The IMF urges its private lenders to agree on certain debt write-offs, as the situation has deteriorated significantly since the fund made its last assessment in July 2019, among other things, the value of the person has dropped by more than 40 percent and the foreign exchange reserve has also decreased significantly. The message is a success for President Alberto Fernández, but the market is reacting negatively and the price of Argentine government bonds fell, as did Argentina’s credit market rating. However, in its written opinion, the IMF does not say whether the fund can agree to any write-downs of the $ 44 billion that Argentina borrowed from the IMF. The week before the meeting, IMF chief Kristalina Georgieva said that they expect to get all their money back. Argentina’s GDP fell by just over 2 percent in 2019, according to the country’s statistical authority.
Dinosaur skeleton found in Patagonia
Argentine scientists find a 90 million year old skeleton of a dinosaur in Patagonia. The species is believed to be a distant relative of Tyrannosaurus rex, but significantly smaller than that. The scientists call it Tralkasaurus cuyi.
Argentina tries to renegotiate loans with the IMF
Argentina and the IMF start new negotiations in Buenos Aires. The Argentine government hopes to renegotiate the terms for parts of the foreign debt, $ 195 billion of a debt of $ 311 billion. This includes the $ 44 billion crisis loan the previous bourgeois government received from the IMF 2018. President Alberto Fernández says Argentina cannot repay the debt as long as the economy does not grow. At the same time, the country has major problems with high inflation and rising unemployment and poverty.
Heat records in Antarctica
A heat record of 18.3 degrees was measured at Esperanza weather station in the Argentine part of Antarctica. It is the highest temperature in the area since 1961, according to Argentina’s weather service. The previous record was 17.5 degrees and was measured in 2015.
New abortion fight is waiting in Argentina
6th of February
The Catholic Church announces a manifestation against abortion for the Women’s Day on March 8 under the slogan “yes to women, yes to life”. This is since President Alberto Fernández said at a meeting in Paris that he intends to introduce legislation to decriminalize abortion.
Fernandez asks the Pope for help
President Alberto Fernández embarks on a tour of Europe with a visit to Pope Francis, also he Argentine. The two then know each other way back and for talks, among other things, about what the Pope and the Vatican can do to help Argentina manage the high foreign debt. Argentina’s foreign debt is estimated at $ 335 billion, of which 44 billion has been borrowed by the IMF. The total debt corresponds to about 90 percent of Argentina’s GDP.
Argentina avoids new duties on steel and aluminum
Argentina welcomes the US decision not to introduce new tariff duties on Argentine steel and aluminum, which US President Donald Trump threatened. Foreign Minister Felipe Solá says that if the tariffs had become a reality, it would have cost many jobs in Argentina. The United States is the most important export market for Argentine steel and aluminum. Exports bring in about $ 700 million a year.