Definition of Youth

As listed on its official Facebook page, Argentina’s National Youth Bureau defines youth as people between the ages of 15 and 29 years of age.


Marriageable Age

  • Opposite Sex
  • Same Sex
  • Without parental consent
  • with parental consent
  • Male
  • 18
  • --
  • 18
  • Female
  • 18
  • --
  • 18

  • Same-sex marriage is legal. Source: UNSD, ILGA

Candidacy Age

Criminal Responsibility

Minimum Age
Source:  Penal Code of Argentina

Majority Age


Source: Valente (2012)

Voting Age


Compulsory voting.
Source:  Inter-Parliamentary Union

Situation of Young People

Literacy Rates

Both sexes (15-24) %
  • 99.13% Male (15-24) %
  • 99.48% Female (15-24) %

Net Enrolment Rate

Secondary School
Both sexes %
  • 81.49%Male %
  • 88.87% Female %

Situation of Young People

Prevalence of HIV

Male (15-24) %
Female (15-24) %

Tobacco Use

Consumed any smokeless or smoking tobacco product at least once 30 days prior to the survey.
Both sexes (13-15) %
  • 26.10% Male (13-15) %
  • 29.70% Female (13-15) %
  • Year: 2010
  • Source: WHO

Policy & Legislation

Is there a national youth policy?
Argentina has no national youth policy, but the National Youth Bureau determines policy.

While Argentina has a National Youth Bureau, it lacks a unified national youth policy.  The Bureau rather focuses on a variety of social policies that affect the welfare of youth, in three main policy areas: participation, civic education and coordinating youth programmes across government departments. A 2009 World Bank report reviews additional policy areas that have an influence on youth, namely education, labour markets, health and citizenship and participation. The report argues for a more effective cross-sector implementation capacity, including “clear coordination structures, implementation mandate structures and collaborative arrangements, effective youth participation and engagement, and quality monitoring and evaluation,” despite the presence of a dedicated youth bureau.

Public Institutions

Is there a governmental authority
(ministry, department or office) that is primarily responsible for youth?
National Youth Bureau (Direcciòn Nacional de Juventud) falls under the Ministry of Social Development. According to its official Facebook page, it was created in 1987, originally part of the former Ministry of Health and Social Action. Its three main policy areas are youth participation, civic education and cross-departmental coordination of youth services. According to Innovations in Civic Participation, it also is in charge of registering all youth-focused civil society organisations, to promote the development of common direction and policies.

Youth and Representation

Does the country have a national youth organisation / association (council, platform, body)?
The Federal Youth Council (Consejo Federal de Juventud) consists of accredited youth organisations throughout Argentina. Established by Law 26227, its functions include strengthening the participation of young people and youth organisations and promoting coordinated policies on youth. The Council is chaired by a national director of youth (or equivalent), and the Ministry of Social Development provides both funding and human resources. It is unclear from Law 26227 what, if any, roles are specifically for youth, and how youth participate in its decision-making.

Budget & Spending

What is the budget allocated to the governmental authority (ministry, department or office) that is primarily responsible for youth and/or youth programming?
In the 2013 Budget Abstract, the Ministry of Social Development was allocated ARS 35 million (USD 5.6 million). However, it is unclear what portion of this amount is specifically for youth. According to the World Bank, Argentina spent 14% of its government expenditure in 2009 and 5.8% of its GDP on education provision in 2010.
Total Expenditure on Education as a Percentage of Government Spending and GDP

  • % of GDP
  • % of gov. expenditure

Source: World Bank
Gaps indicate missing data from the original data source. (Accessed August 2013).

Additional Background

From Argentine Youth: Untapped Potential (2009):

In Argentina 6.7 million people are between the ages of 15 and 24 (17 percent of the population). While the youth share of the population is high compared with the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD) countries, it is one of the lowest in Latin America and the Caribbean. Youth constitute only 12 percent of the population in Spain, 14 percent in the United States, and 16.9 percent in Chile [...]

Young women in Argentina make up a smaller share of the female population than young men do of the male population, mainly because of women’s longer life expectancies (78 years for women compared with 71 years for men in 2003; World Bank 2005c).

Like most other countries, Argentina’s fertility rate has fallen and life expectancy has increased [...]

Women now complete more schooling and enter the labor market in greater numbers, which has encouraged family planning and reduced fertility. Better health services and nutrition have increased life expectancies. These changes have diminished the share of children (ages 0–14) compared with that of other groups [...]

Net secondary enrollment rates have increased impressively at all levels during 1992–2005—from 65 percent in 1992 to 83 percent in 2005—especially for young men [...]

Moreover, net enrollment rates increased for all quintiles, but more so for the median than for the top or bottom quintiles.

Enrollment growth has outpaced population growth for all age groups since the early 1980s [...]

In 1991–2001 enrollment growth was 33 percentage points higher than population growth for young people ages 15–17. The educational system proved responsive to the increasing demand. In 2004, 9.9 million students were enrolled in kindergarten, primary, and secondary school in Argentina, the majority (74 percent) in public schools.