President Mauricio Macri signed a series of financing and investment agreements totaling US$ 15 billion today with his Chinese Counterpart, Xi Jinping. The construction of two nuclear power plants, a solar power plant in Jujuy and public works projects modernizing and remodeling the General San Martín railway line are the main projects that will be financed with money from the Chinese State.
The two heads of state also signed a memorandum of understanding and cooperation in different areas of mutual interest with the goal of “consolidating the strategic association” in the countries’ bilateral relation.
“This trip will be revolutionary. The next 10 years in our relationship with China will be better than the previous 45. We hope to have an enormous work schedule in the future,” said Macri hours before his work meeting with the Chinese president.
The project that will demand the largest investment will be the construction of the two nuclear power plants. One will be built in Atucha, in Buenos Aires Province — there are already two other operating plants of the kind there — and the other in the Province of Río Negro, although its specific location hasn’t been determined yet. Second on the list is the complete revamping of the General San Martín railway line, which unites the Provinces of Buenos Aires and Mendoza. The project will cost US $2.1 billion and will be conducted by the Transportation Ministry, headed by Guillermo Dietrich.
The Chinese government will also lend the government US $400 million to set up a solar power plant in the Jujuy Province. “We’ve got the approval of China’s Export-Import Bank. The agreement is ready after a year’s work” said Jujuy Governor Gerardo Morales, who is part of the official delegation.
The Macri administration also went to China to start working towards evening the balance trade between both countries. According to official data, China sells US$ 10 billion worth of goods and services every year to Argentine, while Argentina’s exports to China are a rather anemic US$ 300 million.
Macri will travel to Shanghai tonight to attend the official inauguration of the Argentine stand in the SIAL fair tomorrow morning. He will finish his stay in the country with a lunch meeting with footballer Carlos Tevez and then make his way to Japan, the third scale of his Asian tour.