Vienna, 7 June 2010 Press release

Spindelegger: “Unutilised Latin American-Austrian potential should be jointly realised”

Foreign Minister inaugurates bicentennial celebrations of Latin American independence

Vienna, 7 June 2010 – “The 200th anniversary of the independence of Latin American states provides an apt milestone for the further intensification of our excellent relations as well as for the exploitation of unutilised potential through concerted action,” stated Foreign Minister Michael Spindelegger in his welcome address at the celebrations being held at Vienna’s Diplomatic Academy. The event, dedicated to the motto Free and United: 200 Years later, commemorates the 200th anniversary of the onset of independence processes of the Latin America countries Argentina, Colombia, Chile, Ecuador, Mexico and Venezuela.

Today, 200 years after this dramatic development, the region looks back on a number of impressive successes: “The Latin American region has overcome the global economic crisis relatively unharmed, and its dynamic economic development is acknowledged throughout the world. Latin America’s political influence is continuously growing and is clearly visible on the international stage,” affirmed the Foreign Minister.

Against this background, Spindelegger reiterated his conviction that Austria could only benefit from intensified cooperation with the countries of the region, a conviction he had already expressed on the occasion of his recent visit to Latin America. “There is great potential for common interests and perspectives on both sides. In particular, areas such as environmental technology, energy use and renewable energy, still offer many opportunities for intense collaboration. Austria, with its comprehensive expertise in the field of energy, and the city of Vienna with its eight international energy organisations provide an excellent starting point for successful cooperation,” concluded the Foreign Minister.

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