Argentina and the other countries that make up the Union of South American Nations (UNASUR in its Spanish initials) closed the year 2012 with unemployment rates lower than developed nations with an average for the region of 6.1 per cent as opposed to 10.5% in the EU and 7.9% in the USA.

So, while in Europe one in ten people are out of work, and in some countries such as Spain and Greece this ratio is one in four; in South America unemployment is down to one in twenty citizens.

In the region, Brazil led unemployment rates with 4.6% at the end of 2012, the lowest in her history.

Argentina also held one of the lowest rates in history with 6.9% unemployment.

Chile closed the year with unemployment of 6.1% and Uruguay with 6%; in Peru unemployment was at 6.7%; Paraguay 5.6%; Bolivia 5%; Ecuador 4.8%; Colombia 9.2% and Venezuela 6.4%.

These numbers contrast strongly with 26.8% out of work in Greece; 26.1% in Spain; 17.5% in Croatia; 16.5% in Portugal and 14.7% in Ireland, Cyprus and Slovakia.

Very much higher than the rates of UNASUR countries were the unemployment rates in Latvia with 14.2% of the economically active population without work; Lithuania and Bulgaria with 12.3%; Italy with 11.2%; Hungary with 10.9%; Poland and France with 10.6% and Slovenia with 10%.

Others above the South American average were Estonia (9.9%); Turkey (8.2%); Denmark (8%), the United Kingdom (7.8%); Finland (7.7%) and Belgium and the Czech Republic (7.5%).