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Overview of Argentina

Argentina is the eighth largest country in the world and is situated in South America. Its capital – Buenos Aires – is the continents most visited city. Both the hottest and the coldest temperature in South America have been measured in Argentina. Argentina is famous as the origin of the tango and its Argentine beef. It has a population of 44.49 million and the official language is Spanish although many also speak English and many other European languages such as Italian and German. Argentina is a Presidential Representative Democratic Republic. Unlike the rest of latin America, about 85% of Argentinian nationals are of European descent.

When doing business in Argentina, ensure you dress well. Business attire is conservative. Business dinners are common. For lunch, many employees go home. Long meals and conversations are the norm. The better the relationship with the business party, the shorter the negotiation time. Contracts will be long and detailed and not valid until every party signs. Punctuality is flexible and Argentinians will often be up to 30 minutes late to meetings.

Currency of Argentina

  • Argentine Peso

Health Insurance and the Social Security system of Argentina

Healthcare in Argentina is divided into 3 parts – the public sector, social security and the private sector. Healthcare is often independently managed by each city.

The public sector in Argentina provides free or highly subsidised healthcare to about 50% of the people in Argentina. Medical, hospital, dental and palliative care, rehabilitation, prosthetics and medical transport are free of charge. Prescriptions are the only thing that is charged. Long waiting lists however make Argentinians choose a different sector for their healthcare.

Social Security (obras sociales – OS) is financed by a fixed fee contributions from employers and employees. This is the most common form of health insurance in the country and is managed mainly by the trade unions. Obras sociales must guarantee minimum medical coverage such as preventative, diagnostic, medical and dental treatment, maternity, etc. The patient covers the difference in cost between the fixed fee and the cost of treatment.

Private insurances are the classic private insurance policies. About 5% of the population subscribes to a private health insurance.

Employer cost of Argentina

The cost for an employer to hire someone in Argentina is a plus of 20.40% to the gross salary.

Salary and bonuses of Argentina

Employees who work on a wage are paid monthly. Employees who work on an hourly basis are either paid weekly or every 2 weeks. They are required by law to receive their salary on the 5th of the following month.

Employees receive a 13th salary. Most employers pay the 13th salary in two installments, one before June 30th and the other before December 18th.

Public Holidays in Argentina

  • January 1st – New Year’s Day
  • Day 48 and 47 before Easter – Carnival Monday and Tuesday
  • March 24th – Day for Remembrance for Truth and Justice
  • April 2nd – Day of the Veterans and Fallen of the Falklands War
  • April 14th – Good Friday
  • May 1st – Labour Day
  • May 25th – May Revolution
  • June 17th – Anniversary of the Passing of General Martín Miguel de Güemes
  • June 20th – General Manuel Belgrano Memorial Day
  • July 9th – Independence Day
  • August 17th – General José de San Matín Memorial Day
  • October 12th – Day of Respect for Cultural Diversity
  • November 20th – National Sovereignty Day
  • December 8th – Immaculate Conception Day
  • December 25th – Christmas Day

Working Hours in Argentina

Office hours are from 9:0am to 7:00pm, Monday to Friday. Outside of Buenos Aires, a Siesta needs to be taken into account.

A regular work week is 48 hours.

Overtime should not exceed 3 hours per day, 30 hours per month, or 200 hours per year. Employees are paid 150% for any overtime worked and 200% for having worked on holidays.

Vacation in Argentina

Argentinians are granted between 14 and 35 days of paid vacation a year. The amount depends on how long one has been with the company:

  • 14 days if the employee has been with the company for less than 5 years

  • 21 days for 5 to 10 years.

  • 28 days for 10 to 20 years.

  • 35 days for over 20 years.

Sick Leave in Argentina

When an employee falls sick in Argentina, he must present a medical certificate to his employer. The employer pays the sick leave for the first 15 days. From the 16th day onwards, the working insurance company will pay the sick leave for the employee for 12 months. If the employee is still unable to return to work after 12 months, the employer is obliged to keep the employee on his payroll as in leave for another 12 months.

Termination/Severance in Argentina

In Argentina, an employer can dismiss an employee with or without just cause. If an employee is terminated with or without just cause, the minimum notice period is 15 days to 2 months, depending on the employee’s length of time with the company. If the employee has been with the company longer than 5 years, the minimum notice period is 2 months.

Within certain limits, severance payment is one month’s salary for every year worked for the company.