A British tourist has been shot dead during an attempted robbery in Argentina, authorities said.

A second tourist was seriously injured in the incident in Buenos Aires.

The attack occurred as the tourists approached a luxury hotel in the Puerto Madero area, the Argentine news agency Telam said.

Scene of the attack in Buenos Aires
Scene of the attack in Buenos Aires (Natacha Pisarenko/AP)

Naval officials said in a statement that assailants on a motorcycle, apparently supported by accomplices in a car, tried to steal the belongings of the tourists.

The tourists attempted to resist. One was shot in the groin and the other was shot in the right lung.

Police have launched an investigation to find the attackers.