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Armed violence prevention, gun control laws and the small arms trade:

Argentina — Gun Facts, Figures and the Law

StockpilesGun Numbers

Civilian Guns

Number of Privately Owned Firearms

The estimated total number of guns (both licit and illicit) held by civilians in Argentina is 3,600,0001 2 3

Rate of Civilian Firearm Possession per 100 Population

The estimated rate of private gun ownership (both licit and illicit) in Argentina is 8.81 4 firearms per 100 people

Number of Privately Owned Shotguns

In Argentina, the number of shotguns in civilian possession is reported to be 347,4955

Number of Privately Owned Handguns

There are reportedly 796,8745 handguns in civilian possession in Argentina

Number of Privately Owned Firearms - World Ranking

In a comparison of the number of privately owned guns in 178 countries, Argentina ranked at No. 193

Rate of Privately Owned Firearms per 100 Population - World Ranking

In a comparison of the rate of private gun ownership in 178 countries, Argentina ranked at No. 624

Number of Licensed Firearm Owners

ChartThe number of licensed gun owners in Argentina is reported to be

2006: 569,9792
1999: 450,0005

Rate of Licensed Firearm Owners per 100 Population

ChartThe rate of licensed firearm owners per 100 people in Argentina is

2006: 1.446
1999: 1.22

Number of Registered Firearms

ChartThe number of registered guns in Argentina is reported to be

2010: 1,261,7587 8 9
2008: 1,123,0597
2006: 1,185,4677 2
2001: 2,597,122

Rate of Registered Firearms per 100 Population

ChartThe rate of registered guns per 100 people in Argentina is

2010: 3.056
2008: 2.77
2006: 2.99
2001: 6.89

Estimated Number of Illicit Firearms

Unlawfully held guns cannot be counted, but in Argentina there are estimated to be 700,000 to 2,000,00010

Government Guns

Number of Military Firearms

The defence forces of Argentina are reported to have 430,00011 10 firearms

Number of Law Enforcement Firearms

Police in Argentina are reported to have 175,00011 to 270,00012 firearms

ImpactsDeath and Injury

Total Number of Gun Deaths

In Argentina, annual deaths resulting from firearms total 2001: 4,33113

Rate of All Gun Deaths per 100,000 People

In Argentina, the annual rate of all gun deaths per 100,000 population is 2001: 11.496

Homicides (any method)

ChartIn Argentina, annual homicides by any means total

2010: 2,23714 15
2009: 2,21514 15 16
2008: 2,305
2007: 2,071
2006: 2,052
2005: 2,115
2004: 2,259
2003: 2,876
2002: 3,453
2001: 3,048
2000: 2,653
1999: 2,66814
1998: 2,607
1997: 3.265
1996: 3,001
1995: 2,723

Rate of Homicide per 100,000 People (any method)

ChartIn Argentina, the annual rate of homicide by any means per 100,000 population is

2010: 5.514 15
2009: 5.514 15 16
2008: 5.8
2007: 5.3
2006: 5.3
2005: 5.5
2004: 5.9
2003: 7.6
2002: 9.2
2001: 8.2
2000: 7.2
1999: 7.314
1998: 7.2
1997: 9.1
1996: 8.5
1995: 7.8
1994: 4.5117

Gun Homicides

ChartIn Argentina, annual firearm homicides total

2008: 1,19814 18
2007: 1,016
2006: 1,013
2005: 1,044
2004: 1,17418
2001: 1,61713

Rate of Gun Homicide per 100,000 People

ChartIn Argentina, the annual rate of firearm homicide per 100,000 population is

2008: 3.014 18
2007: 2.614 18 16
2006: 2.6
2005: 2.7
2004: 3.118
2001: 4.2113
1994: 2.1119

Suicides (any method)

ChartIn Argentina, annual suicides by any means total

2009: 2,90020
2008: 3,111
2007: 3,001
2006: 3,128
2005: 3,02120 21
2004: 3,14720
2003: 3,270
2002: 3,165
2001: 3,135
2000: 2,807
1996: 2,24513

Rate of Suicide per 100,000 People (any method)

ChartIn Argentina, the annual rate of suicide by any means per 100,000 population is

2009: 7.220
2008: 7.8
2007: 7.6
2006: 8.020 21
2005: 7.8
2004: 8.220
2003: 8.6
2002: 8.4
2001: 8.4
2000: 7.6
1996: 5.8413
1994: 6.7122

Gun Suicides

In Argentina, annual firearm suicides total 2001: 1,07413

Rate of Gun Suicide per 100,000 People

ChartIn Argentina, the annual rate of firearm suicide per 100,000 population is

2001: 2.7913
1994: 3.0523

Unintentional Gun Deaths

In Argentina, annual unintentional shooting deaths total 2001: 24713

Rate of Unintentional Gun Death per 100,000 People

ChartIn Argentina, the annual rate of unintentional shooting death per 100,000 population is

2001: 0.6413
1994: 0.3224

Gun Deaths from Undetermined Cause

In Argentina, annual shooting deaths in which the cause remains undecided total 2001: 1,39313

Rate of Gun Death from Undetermined Cause per 100,000 People

ChartIn Argentina, the annual rate of unknown-cause shooting deaths per 100,000 population is

2001: 3.6213
1994: 3.7125

ProductionGun Industry

Regulation of Firearm Makers

In Argentina, the manufacture of small arms, ammunition and/or their components is permitted only if the maker holds a valid licence26 27 28 29 30 31 32 33 34

Small Arms Manufacture - World Ranking

In a classification of the world's small, medium and major firearm manufacturers, Argentina is ranked 'small'35

TransfersGun Trade and Trafficking

Regulation of Firearm Exports

In Argentina, firearm and ammunition exports are limited by transfer control law26 36 37 38 39 40

Small Arms Exports (US$) - Customs

The annual value of small arms and ammunition exports from Argentina is reported by Customs to be US$18,851,00241 (2011) 42

Small Arms Exports - World Ranking

In a comparison of the world's major/mid-level/minor/unknown small arms exporters, Argentina is categorized as 'mid-level'43

Regulation of Firearm Imports

In Argentina, firearm and ammunition imports are limited by transfer control law44 45 46 47 48 31 32 49 36 38 39 40

Small Arms Imports (US$) - Customs

The annual value of small arms and ammunition imports to Argentina is reported by Customs to be US$21,463,33641 (2011)50

Regulation of Arms Brokers

In Argentina, the activities of arms brokers and transfer intermediaries are not specifically regulated by law51 40 52

End User Certificates

Customs regulations in Argentina include36 certification of the intended end user of any small arms or ammunition transfer, and/or a written declaration of its intended end use

Transparency of Small Arms Transfers

In the most recent survey of state transparency in declaring firearm and ammunition exports among major small arms exporting nations, Argentina was ranked at No. 3953

MeasuresGun Regulation

Firearm Regulation - Guiding Policy

The regulation of guns in Argentina is categorised as restrictive54

Firearm Law

Guiding gun control legislation in Argentina includes the Firearms Act No. 20.429 of 197355 56 and its regulation, Decree No. 395/7557

Firearm Regulation Authority

Guns in Argentina are regulated by the Ministry of Defence, through the National Firearm Registry58 59

Right to Possess Firearms

In Argentina, the right to private gun ownership is not guaranteed by law60

Restricted Firearms and Ammunition

In Argentina, civilians are not allowed to possess large gauge shotguns with a barrel length less than 380 mm, concealed firearms or launching weapons (pencils, pens, cigar, etc.), and expanding and incendiary ammunition,61 62 with only narrow exemptions,63 64 65 as well as certain types of handguns66 67 68

Regulation of Semiautomatic Assault Weapons

In Argentina, private possession of semi-automatic assault weapons is permitted under licence69 70

Regulation of Handguns

In Argentina, private possession of handguns (pistols and revolvers) is permitted under licence69 71 66 67

Law Regulates Long Guns

In Argentina, civilian possession of rifles and shotguns is regulated by law69 71 61

Gun Ownership and Possession

In Argentina, only licensed gun owners72 73 74 75 76 63 64 65 39 may lawfully acquire, possess or transfer a firearm or ammunition

Genuine Reason Required for Firearm Possession

Applicants for a gun owner’s licence in Argentina are required to establish a genuine reason to possess a firearm, for example hunting, target shooting, personal protection73 77 78

Minimum Age for Firearm Possession

The minimum age for gun ownership in Argentina is 21 years for military firearms and 18 years for civilian firearms76 79

Gun Owner Background Checks

An applicant for a firearm licence in Argentina must pass a background check which considers criminal, health, and mental76 80 records

Domestic Violence and Firearms

Where a past history, or apprehended likelihood of family violence exists, the law in Argentina does not stipulate5 that a gun licence should be denied or revoked

Firearm Safety Training

In Argentina, an understanding of firearm safety and the law, tested in a theoretical and/or practical training course may be required80 for a firearm licence

Gun Owner Licensing Period

In Argentina, gun owners must re-apply and re-qualify for their firearm licence every five years81

Firearm Registration

Civilian Gun Registration

In Argentina, the law requires82 79 59 83 84 85 38 39 34 that a record of the acquisition, possession and transfer of each privately held firearm be retained in an official register

Gun Dealer Record Keeping

In Argentina, licensed firearm dealers are required86 79 33 34 to keep a record of each firearm or ammunition purchase, sale or transfer on behalf of a regulating authority

Gun Manufacturer Record Keeping

In Argentina, licensed gun makers are required27 28 79 33 34 to keep a record of each firearm produced, for inspection by a regulating authority

State-Owned Firearm Records

In Argentina, State agencies are required87 to maintain records of the storage and movement of all firearms and ammunition under their control

Gun Sales and Transfers

Regulation of Private Gun Sales

In Argentina, the private sale and transfer of firearms is permitted79 88 89 90 84 91

Regulation of Dealer Gun Sales

In Argentina, dealing in firearms by way of business without a valid gun dealer’s licence is unlawful86 88 48 79 31 92 93 90 32 94 84 91

Storage and Transport of Guns and Ammunition

Firearm and Ammunition Storage Regulations - Private

Firearm regulations in Argentina include95 96 97 31 98 written specifications for the lawful safe storage of private firearms and ammunition by licensed gun owners

Firearm and Ammunition Storage Regulations - Dealer

Firearm regulations in Argentina include95 96 written specifications for the lawful safe storage of firearms and ammunition by licensed arms dealers

Firearm and Ammunition Storage Regulations - Government

Government regulations in Argentina include87 written specifications for the lawful safe storage of firearms and ammunition by state entities

Firearm and Ammunition Transport Regulations

Regulations in Argentina include95 99 100 71 101 32 written specifications for the lawful safe storage of firearms and ammunition while in transit

Marking and Tracing Guns and Ammunition

Firearm Marking

In Argentina, a unique identifying mark on each firearm is required by law102 103 27 104 105 106 107

Firearm Tracing

In Argentina, state authorities carry out108 105 106 38 recognised arms tracing and tracking procedures

Carrying Guns

Law Regulates Firearms in Public

In Argentina, carrying a gun in a public place is regulated by law109

Penalty for Illicit Firearm Possession

In Argentina, the maximum penalty for unlawful possession of a firearm110 is 2 years prison and a fine111 112 113

Collection, Amnesty and Destruction Programmes

Authorities in Argentina are known to have114 115 116 117 118 implemented voluntary firearm surrender schemes, and/or weapon seizure programmes in order to reduce the number of illicit firearms in circulation

Exchanged in Gun Buyback

In Argentina, the total number of firearms exchanged for monetary or in-kind compensation during recent gun buyback and disposal programmes is reported to be 160,531119 (2007-12)120 118 115

Small Arms Destroyed

ChartIn Argentina, the total number of firearms destroyed following recent amnesty, collection and seizure programmes is reported to be

2012: 10,745119 115
2010: 23,395121 122
2009: 51,672121 122 123 106
2008: 32,825121 122 123
2007: 20,037121 124 123
2006: 305123
2005: 4,808
2004: 11,200
2003: 14,471
2002: 5,002125 123
2001: 3,925123
2000: 14,822
1999: 709
1998: 2,626
1996: 1,376
1995: 3,650
1994: 916
1993: 709

Destruction and Disposal Policy

In Argentina, it is state policy126 127 121 122 to destroy surplus, collected and seized firearms rather than return them to the secondary arms market

MeasuresInternational Controls

Regional Agreements

Organization of American States

On 14 November 1997, as a member of the Organisation of American States (OAS), Argentina adopted the Inter-American Convention against the Illicit Manufacturing of and Trafficking in Firearms, Explosives, Ammunition and Other Related Materials (CIFTA), a legally binding multilateral treaty of which the OAS is depository. The CIFTA Convention has since been signed and ratified128 129 by Argentina

United Nations Commission on Crime Prevention and Criminal Justice

The UNCCPCJ, a subsidiary body of the Economic and Social Council mandated to promote action to prevent national and transnational crime, lists130 Argentina as an elected member

Geneva Declaration on Armed Violence and Development

The Geneva Declaration on Armed Violence and Development, a diplomatic initiative aimed at addressing the interrelations between armed violence and development, was signed in 2007131 by Argentina.

United Nations Arms Trade Treaty

The United Nations Arms Trade Treaty has been signed and ratified132 by Argentina

United Nations Firearms Protocol

The United Nations Protocol against the Illicit Manufacturing of and Trafficking in Firearms, Their Parts and Components and Ammunition has been signed and ratified133 by Argentina

United Nations Small Arms Programme of Action UNPoA

UNPoA Commitment

On 21 July 2001, Argentina committed to a consensus decision of the United Nations to adopt, support and implement the UN Programme of Action to Prevent, Combat and Eradicate the Illicit Trade in Small Arms and Light Weapons in All Its Aspects134

UNPoA Implementation Monitor Score

In its UN small arms Programme of Action Implementation Monitor (PoAIM Phase 1), the Small Arms Survey scored Argentina against its commitments to the PoA, then ranked it at No. 37135 136 137 138 among 159 Member States

UNPoA National Reporting

Under the terms of its 2001 commitment to the United Nations small arms Programme of Action, Argentina has submitted one or more national reports139 52 on its implementation of the UNPoA

UNPoA National Point of Contact

In Argentina, a National Point of Contact to deal with issues relating to the UNPoA has been designated140 52

UNPoA National Coordinating Body

In Argentina, a National Coordinating Body to deal with issues relating to the UNPoA has been designated140 52

UNPoA Civil Society Involvement and Support

In National Reports of Argentina submitted to the UN, a history of substantive cooperation with civil society in support of UNPoA activities is apparent140 52

UNPoA International Assistance – Donor

Funds for UNPoA implementation have not been donated52 by Argentina to other UN Member States

United Nations Small Arms Register

According to the United Nations Register of Conventional Arms, Argentina has declared141 its small arms exports in one or more annual National Reports on Arms Exports.

United Nations Membership

In the UN List of Member States, Argentina has been a Member State of the United Nations since 1945142

Wassenaar Arrangement

The Wassenaar Arrangement on Export Controls and Conventional Arms and Dual-Use Goods and Technologies lists143 Argentina as a Participating State

BackgroundCountry Profile

Conflict Profile

For a profile of conflict in Argentina, select the Link icon to open an external web page from the UCDP Conflict Encyclopedia at Uppsala University

Global Peace Index

To see where Argentina ranks, select the Link icon to open an external web page at the Global Peace Index


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Argentina.1975.‘Legitimate Users - Weapons of War (Legítimos usuarios - armas de guerra).’ Decree No. 395/75, Regulations for the National Act on Arms and Explosives No. 20.429.Buenos Aires:National Executive Branch,20 February. (Q9818)Full Citation

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Argentina.1975.‘Legitimate Users - Permission (Legítimo usuario - permiso).’ Decree No. 395/75, Regulations for the National Act on Arms and Explosives No. 20.429.Buenos Aires:National Executive Branch,20 February. (Q9819)Full Citation

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Argentina.1975.‘Authority to Carry - Expiration (Autorización de tenencia - caducidad).’ Decree No. 395/75, Regulations for the National Act on Arms and Explosives No. 20.429.Buenos Aires:National Executive Branch,20 February. (Q9820)Full Citation

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Argentina.1999.‘Handgun Regulation - Various (Regulación de armas de puño - Varios).’ Provision 031/99 (Disposición 031/99).Buenos Aires:National Executive Branch,26 March. (Q9847)Full Citation

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Argentina.1996.‘Handguns for Civilian Use - Calibre .38 Special (Armas de fuego para uso civil - calibre .38 SP).’ Decree No. 821/96, Modifying Regulations for the National Act on Arms and Explosives No. 20.429.Buenos Aires:National Executive Branch,23 July. (Q9844)Full Citation

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Argentina.1995.‘Regulation of Firearms - Semi-automatic (Regulación de armas de fuego - semiautomáticas).’ Decree No. 64/95, Modifying Decree No. 395/75, Regulations for the National Act on Arms and Explosives No. 20.429 (Possession of Automatic Weapons).Buenos Aires:National Executive Branch,13 July. (Q9837)Full Citation

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Argentina.1973.‘Certificate of Ownership (Certificado de tenencia).’ Firearms Act No. 20.429 of 1973.Buenos Aires:National Executive Branch,21 May. (Q9799)Full Citation

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Argentina.1975.‘Requirements for Authorised Users (Condiciones para los usuarios autorizados).’ Decree No. 395/75, Regulations for the National Act on Arms and Explosives No. 20.429.Buenos Aires:National Executive Branch,20 February. (Q9815)Full Citation

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Argentina.1975.‘Genuine Reason (Razones genuinas).’ Decree No. 395/75, Regulations for the National Act on Arms and Explosives No. 20.429.Buenos Aires:National Executive Branch,20 February. (Q9817)Full Citation

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Argentina.1999.‘Background Checks - Training and Health (Revisión de Antecedentes - Formación y Salud).’ Provision 063/99 (Disposición 063/99).Buenos Aires:National Executive Branch,22 July. (Q9848)Full Citation

81.

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82.

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Argentina.1991.‘Private System for Technical Co-operation and Financial Assistance for the National Firearm Registry (Sistema privado de cooperación técnica y asistencia financiera para el Registro Nacional de Armas).’ Act No. 23.979, on the Creation of a Private System for Technical Co-operation and Financial Assistance for the National Firearm Registry.Buenos Aires:National Executive Branch,14 August. (Q9843)Full Citation

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Argentina.1975.‘Security Measures (Medidas de seguridad).’ Decree No. 395/75, Regulations for the National Act on Arms and Explosives No. 20.429.Buenos Aires:National Executive Branch,20 February. (Q9828)Full Citation

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