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Argentina and South Africa

29 July 2019

Located below the tropic of Capricorn latitude on the globe Argentina and South Africa are described as nations of the South.  An open society, a free market economy and respect for human rights are also common values among the respective nations says Ambassador Alberto Pedro D'Alotto, Argentina’s recently accredited Ambassador to South Africa in a conversation with The Diplomatic Society.

Photo: Ambassador Alberto Pedro D’Alotto with Ambassador Ntombizodwa Lallie, Deputy Director General of Americas and Europe, Department of International Relations and Cooperation of SA at the National Day celebration of Argentina

D’Alotto brings a dearth of knowledge and 35 years of experience in international relations to South Africa. 

Having served the Ministry of Foreign Affairs in various capacities he occupied key postings in Washington and New York in the USA as well as in Geneva, Switzerland.  He was also appointed to the position of Deputy Minister of Foreign Affairs for Argentina between 2010 and 2011.

President Mandela has many admirers in Argentina, including the current President Mauricio Macri, who attended the BRICS summit that was held in Johannesburg last year.  Ambassador D’Alotto himself has visited South Africa previously on three occasions in his professional capacity and is excited and enthusiastic to represent his country here in South Africa “a country with which we share a close relationship with and common values,” said D’Alotto

Like other representative missions in Pretoria, Ambassador D’Alotto looks forward to his role and interactions with several countries in the region which also forms part of his responsibilities and portfolio. D’Alotto’s arrival on the African continent is timeous and opportune as the Free Trade Agreement (CFTA), the largest free trade zone in the world, is being rolled out.

Both South Africa and Argentina are invested in agriculture and livestock farming which forms the basis of trade relations between the countries. It is also a platform for knowledge sharing and exchanges of latest, new and innovative developments in the sector. Argentina has been a regular participant at the annual premier South African Agricultural Trade Show, known as NAMPO, engaging with farmers.

“I have been to watch the Pumas, the Argentine national rugby team play against the Springboks,” enthused D’Alotto. “Argentina has a well-developed infrastructure for the development of rugby, which begins at school level all the way to professional leagues.” Enthusiastic sports fans and supporters are another common trait shared by the two nations, especially the overflowing passion for the beautiful game of football, considered to be the biggest sporting activity in the world. The sport of kings or hockey on horseback, Polo, is also an area in which the countries compete and participate. Teams from both countries have travelled across the Atlantic Ocean to play and challenge for accolades and recognition.

2019 marks the 203rd Anniversary of the Declaration of Independence of Argentina which took place in the city of Tucumán, on July the 9th of 1816.

In his remarks on the occasion celebrating this milestone Ambassador D’Alotto spoke of the diversity of the breath-taking diverse landscape of it 3 million sqm land area complimented by the diversity of its people made up of immigrants from Europe, Asia and the Middle East. More than half of the population of its 40 million people are descendants of Italian immigrants.

“We produce food for about four hundred million people, but we also export software, nuclear reactors, airplanes, biotechnology and video games. We have been awarded with three Nobel prizes in science and two Peace Nobel prizes."

Ambassador D’Alotto expressed gratitude for South Africa’s support for the Malvinas Islands (Falklands), the sovereignty dispute between Argentina and Britain.  

Re-establishing the direct airline route to Buenos Aires from South Africa will be one the priorities for D’Alotto as this significant growth, not only in tourism but also in trade and investment, grew remarkably due to the direct link between the countries, and is an important connection between the two continents.



 


 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
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July/August 2019

 
 
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