President Obama Reconnects US And Argentina Relations on New Level

Time: 11:31 p.m. CEST

President Barack Obama discussed with the newly elected President of Argentina Mauricio Macri on Wednesday and held joined news conference where both presidents discussed Macri’s economic reform agenda, opportunities for expanding trade and investment, science and technology cooperation, support that U.S. offers to build Argentina’s capacity to combat organized crime. President Obama praised the efforts of President Macri for who he said, “Is a man in a hurry.”

“I’m impressed because he has moved rapidly on so many of the reforms that he promised — to create more sustainable and inclusive economic growth, and to reconnect Argentina with the global economy and the world community.” Obama said that both agreed to disrupt terrorism, “to do more to choke off the terrorist financing mechanisms that are in place, and to keep our people safe when they travel.” The U.S. federal agencies will support Argentina’s counterterrorism efforts.

“We are also supportive of President Macri’s intention to return to Argentina’s traditional role as a significant contributor to peacekeeping missions, including by supporting United Nations efforts to protect vulnerable populations.” Obama said, although both discussed current political crisis in Brazil, they are convinced that “Brazil will come out of this process and crisis strengthened, and we hope this will be as soon as possible.  Because, clearly, whatever happens in Brazil also has an impact on what happens in our own country.”

The factsheet published by the White House announced significant interest of the U.S. companies to announce multibillion-dollar investments that will help build upon the more than $20 billion in annual United States-Argentina trade.  Argentina and the United States signed a Trade and Investment Framework Agreement, which recognizes the essential role of trade and private investment, both domestic and foreign, in furthering growth and creating jobs.

The two countries will also take steps to support women entrepreneurs, particularly through the Women’s Entrepreneurship in the Americas initiative.  Small Business Administration Administrator Maria Contreras-Sweet will lead a delegation to Argentina in April to sign a Memorandum of Understanding with the Ministry of Production and launch these efforts. In January, the United States ended its policy, in place since 2011, of opposing most lending to Argentina by multilateral development banks.

On Thursday, Obama will visit a memorial to the victims of the Argentinian military dictatorship, and recognize, as he said, Argentina’s historic and continuing efforts to make things right.


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