Falkland IslandsFalkland Islands
Argentina dispatched on Monday complaint letters to several international and regional organizations accusing the United Kingdom of further militarizing the Falklands/Malvinas, with an increased budget, alleging Argentina represents a 'live threat' to the Islanders in the British Overseas Territory and thus ignoring tens of resolutions calling for dialogue between the two sides on the Falklands issue.
The Falkland Islands program to clear mines planted by the invading Argentine forces in 1982, is scheduled to take a break at the end of April, following a very successful task all along summer according to Guy Marot, Program Manager for the Falkland Islands Demining Program Office, as reported in the FIG's edition of February.
Measured by GDP, fishing is the most important industry in the Falkland Islands and in 2012 contributed 34% to GDP, according to the State of the Falklands Economy report from the FIG Policy Unit.
A recent piece from the Financial Times points to the fact that despite the remoteness of the Falkland Islands, the fall of international oil prices and the ongoing conflict with Argentina, this has not impeded small oil and gas companies from going ahead with exploration, and hopefully before 2020 production, in the Islands waters.
Type 23 frigate HMS Lancaster sailed from her home in Portsmouth last week for a routine nine-month Atlantic patrol tasking, which includes the Falklands and South Georgia. She is the first ship in the Royal Navy to deploy with the new Wildcat helicopter, and her crew are wearing the newest naval uniform in 70 years.
The Argentine government and media agree that the country does not have the military capacity to attack the Falkland Islands as feared by Britain. A report in daily La Nacion points out the Argentine armed forces lack landing crafts, troop transport vessels and even the Mirage fighter planes are banned from flying on cloudy days because of repeated problems with their instruments.
The United Kingdom is the main import trading partner of the Falkland Islands with 87% of all imported goods coming from the UK in 2012 (Customs and Immigration 2013) with the rest imported mostly from Chile and Uruguay, according to the latest report on the Falklands' State of the Economy.
The Falkland Islands elected Legislative Assembly welcomed the statement of Secretary of Defense before the House of Commons and said it was reassuring that the UK government remains committed to the defense of the Islands, and equally significant the strong support received by the secretary from members of Parliament.
Argentina will take the United Kingdom before the United Nations Decolonization Committee following London's announcement it was increasing expenditure on the Falkland Islands defense, said Foreign minister Hector Timerman on Wednesday.
The Falkland Islands has released two new documents, the Islands State of the Economy and on income needed to comfortably cover all of a household's expenses. The Falklands enjoys one of the highest standards of living in the Americas with low inflation and virtually full employment.