EU Relations with Argentina

The Framework Trade and Economic Co-operation Agreement between the EU and Argentina entered into force in 1990. It includes as fundamental principles two recurrent cornerstones of our cooperation policy: the strengthening of democracy and human rights, as well as regional integration. The follow-up of the agreement entails periodic meetings of the EU-Argentina Joint Commission, including cooperation on higher education, the peaceful use of nuclear energy, and science & technology among other topics. EU-Argentina dialogues include human rights, and macroeconomic issues.

Argentina has a long tradition of European immigration which has led to strong economic, social and cultural transatlantic links with the European Union.

The EU as a whole is Argentina's first partner in cooperation, its first investor and its second trade partner. In 2013 EU and Argentina had a total trade volume of €17.643 billion, accounting for 14.8% of Argentinean foreign trade.

Based on the Country Strategy Paper 2007 – 2013 , the EU allocated €65 million to Argentina 2007-13 under the Development Cooperation Instrument (DCI) in the following priority areas:

  • education to increase social inclusion and vocational training capacity
  • economic competitiveness for small businesses
  • strengthening EU-Argentina relations

In line with the Agenda for Change, the EU has refocused its aid towards sectors and countries that are in the greatest need of external support to ensure maximum impact on poverty reduction. As a result, Argentina is no longer eligible under the EU’s main instrument for bilateral development assistance for the next financial exercise 2014-2020. But Argentina remains eligible to participate in the EU’s regional and thematic programmes.

The EU also provides support to Argentina in other fields such as human rights and engaging with non-state actors. These projects are funded by the European Instrument for Democracy and Human Rights (EIDHR) with the aim of contributing to the development and consolidation of democracy, the rule of law and respect for human rights and fundamental freedoms worldwide.

Regarding regional integration, the EU and Mercosur signed a Framework Co-operation Agreement in 1995 whose main objective is the preparation of an inter-regional association agreement. EU-Mercosur negotiations were re-launched in May 2010 at the EU-LAC Summit of Madrid and are ongoing. Argentina is also a recipient country in line with the priorities described in the Mercosur Regional Strategy Paper 2007 – 2013