Argentine president Cristina Fernandez is leaving this week for an official visit to Russia and controversy over the agreements to be signed has erupted following the publication of a letter in a Sunday newspaper signed by a group of former Energy secretaries who claim the accords compromise Argentina with a foreign country in the execution of highly costly works, like it was done with China”.
Responding to the claim, Federal Planning Minister Julio De Vido who is already in Moscow, released a statement saying energy and infrastructure agreements to be signed with Russia will be “beneficial” for Argentina, aiming at “technological and industrial development” with local companies, technicians and scientists playing a “key role.”
The statements by the ex-officials were published on Sunday in the La Nacion newspaper and referred as well to the recent agreements Argentina reached with China and that were signed into law by the Congress.
“Argentina is a sovereign country and sets relations with other States considering its own interests, taking advantage of the opportunities that, with a mutual cooperative and benefit spirit, Russia offers us,” the minister said in the statement.
According to De Vido, the China agreements were approved by Congress and all the doubts that union and business sectors expressed about the scope of the deals were cleared.
“The agreements with Russia are a continuity of the strengthening in cooperation in strategic areas between both countries that was registered over the past years,” the minister insisted.
Also from Moscow Argentine ambassador Pablo Tettamendi said that space cooperation between Russia and Argentina is on the agenda of the upcoming visit of President Cristina Fernandez, who is scheduled to meet with her counterpart, Vladimir Putin on 23 April.
“This topic of space cooperation is on the agenda for the upcoming visit,” Tettamanti said in an interview adding that there was a need to review the space cooperation agreements the two countries signed over two decades ago.
“We have an agreement that is already a little old, signed in the beginning of nineties… we need to update it to make it meet today’s demands,” Tettamanti said, stressing that the political will for establishing effective cooperation in space exploration is in place both in Moscow and in Buenos Aires.
Tettamanti noted that recently Argentina launched its very first home-built satellite and that Buenos Aires and Moscow are currently discussing cooperation in satellite tracking.