[slideshow_deploy id=’1597′] The Argentina retail market is the third most attractive market in Latin America and one that is currently undergoing significant reforms in 2016 resulting from the recent election. Import restrictions have been relaxed but high tariffs remain. Argentina’s retail market benefits from the country’s size, population, and economy, at least theoretically. It is still too early to tell what real effects the Macri administration’s policies will have in Argentina’s retail markets.
Argentina’s 2012 GDP grew at 3% according to ECLAC. This represents a significant contraction from the 8.3% reached in 2011. Argentinians are estimated to top 42.5 million in 2016 and per-capita GDP is projected to rise to US$12,073 by the same year, according to various estimates. The country’s middle class is the largest in the region on a percentage basis. The UN classified 90.6% of the population as urban and estimates that it will reach 93% by 2015. In addition to being mostly urban, Argentina’s population is relatively young, 38.0% of Argentinians fall between the ages of 20-44, and 64.9% of them are expected to be economically active. On the negative side, Argentina’s current business environment for international investors presents several serious challenges. A growing number of international brands are being forced out of the country due to import restrictions and other trade barriers. The latest casualties are luxury retailers Cartier and Ralph Lauren.
Business Monitor International’s forecasts that Argentina’s retail sales will grow from S$22.74bn in 2012 to US$27.08bn in 2016 due to an expanding population, rising disposable income and a taste for higher-end items. Argentina’s retail sub-sectors likely to grow strongly in the next few years include food and drink, mass grocery retail, consumer electronics, and vehicles. According to BMI and various national definitions, retail sales for Latin America in 2012 are expected to reach US$1,4 trillion and total consumer spending for the region is predicted to be US$3.24trn. Brazil and Mexico will account for an estimated 72.9% of regional retail sales in 2012 and will remain at 71.3% by 2016. Argentina’s predicted 2012 market share of 1.5% is expected to fall to 1.3% by 2016.
As of 2012, Argentina retail was made of 103 shopping centers with a total GLA of 2 million square meters, approximately 7,400 retail stores, and 17% shopping Center penetration.
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