After arriving in Angolan capital Luanda on Thursday, Cristina Fernández de Kirchner today met with President José Eduardo dos Santos to discuss trade agreements between the two countries.
In Angola’s governmental palace Kirchner highlighted the countries’ similarities and said she saw promising business prospects for them in the future. “This is an excellent opportunity; it would be a great shame if we didn’t make the most of it.”
Kirchner travelled with her ministers of foreign affairs and industry and agriculture as well as hundreds of business representatives in what was the president’s first state visit to a Sub-Saharan African country.
“We could say that we are complementary in economic matters, in matters concerning petrol and gas but also in political matters,” the president said, “given that Argentina is an emerging country and Angola is being reconstructed and both nations have common needs.”
Kirchner is said to be pushing for an agreement in which Argentina would exchange food for Angolan oil. Angola is Africa’s second largest oil producer and is looking for international investors to help develop the country’s infrastructure.
Angola is looking to benefit from Argentine expertise, especially in agriculture, and a $US100m credit line from the Latin American country.
According to the Angolan vice-president, Fernando de Piedade Dias dos Santos, “it was quite a positive meeting,” in which it was clear there was, “a vast opportunity for strong cooperation with reciprocal advantages for both countries.”
According to international press agency AFP, Angolan trade with Argentina has increased from $US18m to $US150m between 2001 and 2010.