28th August 2012: After establishing official diplomatic ties with Brazil and Peru, Fiji’s Ambassador to Brazil Mr. Cama Tuiloma recently returned from a successful trip to South America’s second-largest economy, Argentina, and expressed great optimism as Fiji and Argentina begin construction of substantive bilateral relations. This approach is seen as a catalyst for formalizing a deeper and mutually beneficial programme of bilateral cooperation, given our shared positions, in multilateral fora, on climate change, UN reform and peacekeeping, trade liberalization and South-South Cooperation. The visit by Ambassador Tuiloma to Argentina’s capital Buenos Aires was to initiate and begin the process of deepening Fiji’s commitment to engagement with every UN member state by establishing bilateral relations, cooperation and assistance with the Government of the Republic of Argentina particularly in terms of partnership for development to achieve a shared goal/s of mutual benefit.
With a population of over 40 million people, theeconomy of Argentina is Latin America's third-largest with a GDP growth of 8% (2011), a foreign reserve of US$46.5 billion (2011), with a high quality of life being an upper middle-income economy with a GDP per capita of US$10,945 (nominal) and $17,516 (PPP) in 2011. The country benefits from rich natural resources, a highly literate population, an export-oriented agricultural sector and a diversified industrial base. Argentina is considered an emerging market by the FTSE Global Equity Index, and is one of the G-20 major economies.
Ambassador Tuiloma presented a copy of his credentials to the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and also took the opportunity to present draft texts for four agreements in the areas of Development Cooperation, Technical Cooperation, Employment of Dependents of Diplomatic, Consular, Military, Administrative and Technical, Visa Exemption for Diplomatic and Official Passports, as well as a draft Memorandum of Understanding on Political Consultations between the Governments of Argentina and Fiji. It is anticipated that these agreements will be finalized later this year.
The reception by Argentinean Government Ministries was very welcoming and the willingness to cooperate and explore potential areas of development cooperation was evident in positive discussions between Ambassador Tuiloma with various government ministries such as social development – poverty, empowerment, self-production - family, women, church & farmers, food security; health – medical tourism, pharmaceuticals and medicine; trade and tourism; agriculture, fisheries, livestock; defense – peacekeeping training; the Malvinas; and sports; organized through the Argentinean Ministry of Foreign Affairs and agreement particularly in exchange of information, training, sharing of experiences and technology transfer and in the offer by a number of agencies to provide draft MOUs for consideration by our Fiji counterparts in the identification of areas of interests, cooperation and assistance and for comments on the document texts. Discussions also focused on the possibility of a Technical Fact-Finding Mission to Fiji by experts from a number of Argentinean sectors.
With Ambassador Tuiloma’s visit to Argentina, the Government has stated that Fiji will be given priority in the Presentation of Credentials Ceremony in its capital. There are over 35 other Ambassadors awaiting this event. END.
Ministry of Foreign Affairs & International Cooperation P. O. Box 2220 Government Buildings Suva, Fiji