Celebrating the closer of the G20 Leaders Summit in Buenos Aires, President Mauricio Macri highlighted that a communiqué had been reached by the participating countries and that “the world has given (Argentina) a place”.
Macri reacted positively to the content of the communiqué and addressed other relevant events that took place on the sidelines, such as his meetings with US president Donald Trump and the Saudi Crown Prince Mohamed Bin Salman (MBS).
Following the release of the communiqué, President Macri held a press conference in which he reacted to its most significant sections, highlighted the work done throughout the year as forum Chair, and addressed other potentially contentious events such as whether the words “predatory economic activity” were used to refer to China in his bilateral meeting with Trump, or if he discussed the murder of journalist Jamal Khashoggi during another meeting with MBS.
Here are some of Macri’s most significant statements during his press conference:
On the responsibility of organizing the G20 in Argentina this year
- “It is an unprecedented event and an enormous responsibility. It shows the world supports Argentina’s transformations because there has never been an event of such magnitude in South America. I am extremely happy about the way it unfolded. The security operation worked perfectly. I congratulate all the parties involved in the G20 events that took place throughout the year. We did roughly 60 meetings around the country, as our goal was to show the wonderful country we have, in the same way we did at the Teatro Colón” (in reference to last night’s gala at the legendary theater).
- “Today we are part of the world and the world has given us a place. It is interested in us… it wants to accompany us. Us Argentines are happy about these opportunities that appear in this tough context,” he said in reference to the country’s recent economic woes. “The markets are the way they are, we had to live with the change in the markets, as well as the drought. We expect to continue working. We still have two bilateral meetings left with Russia and China. Overall, it will have been 17 of them in these three days.”
On the WTO and Trade
- “The WTO has a big challenge, which is modernizing and eliminating bureaucratic obstacles, as well as improving its mechanism for dispute resolutions. That creates a lot of frustration between those who feel damaged. [WTO director Luis] Acevedo is taking back home several recommendations with him. Argentina believes in the benefits of trade.”
- “The upcoming meeting in Poland is a good opportunity to double down on our commitments. When it comes to climate, we are near a breaking point.”
On Women’s Empowerment
- “We not only have to do it as a way of delivering justice, but because it bolsters development and growth too.”
- “We need to get rid of corruption. When it meddles with infrastructure projects, it messes everything up.”
On his Meeting with Saudi Crown Prince Mohamed Bin Salman and Turkish Head of State Recep Tayyip Erdogan
- “Both of them requested the meetings, just like most of the people I met with did. In my meeting with the Saudi Prince we discussed investment opportunities in Argentina, especially in the energy petro-chemical and food safety sectors. We invited him to invest in the country. It is likely that a Saudi delegation will come to the country in the following months.”
“As for the meeting with the Turkish head of state, we addressed the fact that our bilateral exchange is low. They invited us to pay them a state visit. We did talk about Khashoggi with him. We agreed on the need to continue demanding that truth is revealed.”
On Whether the Words “Predatory Economic Activity” Were Used When Discussing China with Trump
- “At a local level, the media indicated we would have to choose between the US and China. It is not the case. Argentina has shown that we are capable of having friendly relations with all countries. Argentina has never been more connected. As for the wording, we did not use those terms. Argentina does not see China’s presence as a threat, but an opportunity. We want to reach mutually beneficial agreements with all.”
On Why Macri Did not Bring Up the Claim over Malvinas in the meeting with Theresa May
- “We are not resigning our constitutional claim. We value having re-stablished a constructive dialogue, wit the connectivity for the island serving as an example, as well as the DNA identification of the soldiers fallen during the war.”
On Whether The Summit Produced Any Concrete Benefits
- “We got financing for US $3 billion on different projects.”