Tags: Argentina | Russia | diplomacy

Argentina's Kirchner in Russia to Press Nuclear, Trade Deals

Monday, 20 April 2015 12:12 PM EDT

Argentine President Cristina Kirchner will visit Russia's Vladimir Putin Wednesday and Thursday to follow up on nuclear and trade deals the countries signed last year and cultivate a budding relationship.

Putin extended the invitation during a stop last July in Buenos Aires, where Russian and Argentine officials signed a raft of deals on trade, military cooperation, communications and energy projects.

Kirchner's visit comes as the countries mark 130 years of diplomatic relations. But the relationship has gained new impetus in recent years as Kirchner and Putin have found common cause in their often antagonistic relations with the United States and Europe.

Putin is keen to bolster Russia's support in Latin America at a time when the Ukraine crisis has deeply damaged Moscow's relations with the West.

And Kirchner has found in Putin a welcome ally for Argentina's battle against US hedge funds thwarting its effort to restructure its defaulted debt.

When he visited her in July, he also voiced support for Argentina's long-standing bid for sovereignty over the Falklands, calling for "direct negotiations" with Britain over the bitterly disputed islands.

That visit wrapped up with both leaders calling for a more "multi-polar" world less dominated by the United States and the European Union.

This visit is "fundamentally about trade," Argentine cabinet chief Anibal Fernandez told journalists.

"Our job is to consolidate this relationship and incentivize new investment. Our country is a place that attracts investors," he said.

Russia has notably voiced interest in Argentina's energy sector, particularly the Vaca Muerta shale oil and gas field, potentially one of the largest finds in history.

In July the countries also signed a deal on civilian nuclear energy projects, the details of which have not been released. Argentina is currently at work on its fourth nuclear power plant, the $2.4-billion Atucha III reactor.

Bilateral trade between the two totalled $2.1 billion last year, with Russia selling mainly oil and chemical fertilizers, and Argentina mostly exporting food -- profiting from Moscow's ban on US and European food imports, imposed last August amid the Ukraine crisis.

Kirchner will address business leaders from both countries during her trip, her first to Russia since the G-20 summit in Saint Petersburg in September 2013.

sa/jhb/sg

© AFP 2024


TheAmericas
Argentine President Cristina Kirchner will visit Russia's Vladimir Putin Wednesday and Thursday to follow up on nuclear and trade deals the countries signed last year and cultivate a budding relationship.Putin extended the invitation during a stop last July in Buenos Aires,...
Argentina, Russia, diplomacy
367
2015-12-20
Monday, 20 April 2015 12:12 PM
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