A delegation of Argentine officials and businesspeople is travelling to the UK to strengthen trade and investment relations as part of efforts from the private sector, Argentine-British Chamber of Commerce, (ABCC), and both countries governments to promote closer economic and financial ties.
Bilateral trade, compared to other EU countries is minimum, less that 1% of Argentine exports are to the UK and likewise less that 1% of Argentine imports originate in Great Britain. However there are several first line UK companies operating in Argentina such as HSBC, Shell, Pan American Energy, British American Tobacco, Aggreko, Unilever, PwC, Deloitte and BP.
Furthermore Britain has an ambitious UK Export Finance agency which helps British companies to invest overseas, and in this particular case the sum to prop business with Argentina is a billion pounds. Convincing UK companies to take advantage of this opportunity is a good reason for Argentine businesspeople and officials to travel to London.
It will be the third mission of this kind since 2017 when the bilateral business dialogue was first established. Last year some sixty businesspeople and twenty government officials, both at national and provincial level, travelled to the UK. This year's mission has representatives from the energy, oil and gas industry; mining, finances and infrastructure, agriculture, cyber and market access.
A first seminar to attract UK corporations will be taking place at the Argentine embassy residence in London, where members of the delegation will outline the situation of Argentina to the British interested parties. Among those scheduled to address the seminar are Pablo Quirno, International Economic Relations Deputy Secretary; Jesus Sylveira deputy head of Agriculture markets; Jose Luis Morea, General manager of the Investment and Foreign Trade bank; Neuquén province Energy minister Alejandro Monteiro plus representatives from the private sector.
According to ABCC, in finance Argentina is interested in promoting the Public Private Partnership (PPP) system for infrastructure projects. Likewise in agriculture to promote Argentine beef. UK for decades was the main market for Argentine beef, but has been replaced by Ireland.
A second day seminar will concentrate on Argentina's massive shale deposits of Vaca Muerta in the province of Neuquén. Argentina wants to attract British corporations interested in participating in the planned shale exploration and production projects, as well in the so called renewable energies.
Companies participating in the energy seminar include, YPF, Pan American Energy, Shell Argentina, Pampa Energía, Vista Oil & Gas, TGS, Tecpetrol y Gas and Petróleo del Neuquén. International services companies such as Schlumberger, Halliburton and Baker Hughes will also be attending, according to ABCC. Later in the day, it will the turn for mining opportunities, such as the vast copper resources and the new star of the industry, lithium, of which Argentina figures among the countries with the largest accessible deposits.