Argentina's recession-hit economy shrank by 2.1% in 2019, the INDEC national statistics bureau said. The economy contracted by 0.3% in December compared to the same period in 2018. The hardest-hit sectors that month were financial services (-10%), and construction (-8%). On the other hand, the fishing industry grew by 13.5%. GDP had already dropped by 2.5% in 2018.
Argentina closed 2019 with a trade surplus of $ 15.99 billion, the highest since 2009, according to the National Institute of Statistics and Census (Indec). Paradoxically, this was due to the deep economic crisis. The recession caused imports to fall by 25% year-on-year, while mega-devaluation increased exports by 5.4%. Analysts expect a similar result in 2020.
The World Bank expects Argentina to emerge from recession in 2020. Its latest Global Economic Prospects report forecasts a pick up in growth to 4.3% for emerging market economies this year. However it trimmed 0.2% its global growth forecasts slightly for 2019 and 2020 due to a slower-than-expected recovery in trade and investment despite cooler trade tensions between the United States and China.