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Foreign Secretary's visit to Latin America, May 2018

Foreign Secretary Boris Johnson travelled to of Latin America on 19 May for a 5-day visit including Peru, Argentina and Chile.

Foreign Secretary on the site of the athletes' village for upcoming Lima 2019 Pan American and ParaPan American Games
Foreign Secretary Boris Johnson tours site of the athletes' village for upcoming Lima 2019 Pan American and ParaPan American Games.

The Foreign Secretary’s visit included:

  • a trip to the Amazon to see first-hand the work of an animal rescue centre to tackle the illegal wildlife trade in Peru
  • representing the UK at the G20 Foreign Ministers’ meeting in Buenos Aires, Argentina, to discuss a range of global issues with his counterparts
  • vising a British Council funded pilot project in Chile which aims to advance digital literacy and coding skills particularly among female students

Find out more about the Foreign Secretary’s itinerary.

Writing in The Telegraph after his visit, the Foreign Secretary outlined the unique opportunities the region presents for the UK.

Overview of the Foreign Secretary’s visit

Foreign Secretary’s visit overview

Peru

The Foreign Secretary’s time in Peru included:

  • visiting Iquitos, where he and the Peruvian Foreign Minister Nestor Popolizio visited an animal rescue centre to see animals rescued as part of crackdown on the illegal wildlife trade
  • visiting a remote community on an island in the Amazon River to see the education challenges in Peru, where 34% of rural girls are illiterate, and launching a UK-funded solar energy project that is providing energy for the 140-pupil school
  • in Lima, he visited the site of the Lima 2019 Pan American and ParaPan American Games, the world’s fourth largest sporting event in the world; the UK is already providing technical support to help deliver the Games

The Foreign Secretary said:

It’s been wonderful to see the way our relationship is developing and intensifying. We’ve discussed all the things that the UK and Peru can do together, to save endangered wildlife, to help promote the education of women and girls around the world and to build our common prosperity.

We’ve today announced an infrastructure taskforce so that UK expertise can help the Peruvians as they go forward next year to the Pan-American Games and building a wonderful new metro system under Lima.

Argentina

Foreign Secretary Boris Johnson speaking at the G20 Foreign Ministers meeting in Buenos Aires.
Foreign Secretary Boris Johnson speaking at the G20 Foreign Ministers meeting in Buenos Aires.

In the first visit by a British Foreign Secretary to Argentina in 22 years, the Foreign Secretary joined Foreign Minister Faurie, Defence Minister Agaud and Security Minister Bullrich at a ceremony at the ‘Monument to the Fallen’. He laid a wreath in honour of those who died on both sides of the 1982 Falkland Islands conflict.

Following his discussions with Foreign Minister Jorge Faurie at the Palacio San Martin, the Foreign Secretary went to Casa Rosada to meet with President Mauricio Macri. He also represented the UK at the G20 summit.

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Chile

The Foreign Secretary with President Sebastian Piñera of Chile.
The Foreign Secretary with President Sebastian Piñera of Chile.

The Foreign Secretary held talks with the President Sebastian Piñera and Minister of Foreign Affairs Roberto Ampuero to discuss further collaboration on international security, defence, and post-Brexit trade opportunities. View the Foreign Secretary’s remarks at his press conference with Chilean Foreign Minister Roberto Ampuero.

The Foreign Secretary and Foreign Minister Ampuero signed a UK-Chile joint statement on bilateral trade and other opportunities to work together.

During his visit the Foreign Secretary also:

  • launched the British Council-led project ‘Girl Power Codefest Americas’ that aims to empower girls Chile, Colombia and Peru through digital literacy and computer coding
  • joined the Chilean Minister for Economy at the opening of the Bupa Santiago Hospital

Find out more about the Foreign Secretary’s visit to Chile.

Published 21 May 2018