Yesterday’s news in Buenos Aires, that the head’s of 20 major companies in Argentina had been asked to reduce their level of imports from the United Kingdom, met with a swift response. In the UK, the Argentine chargé d’affairs, Osvaldo Marsico, was promptly summoned to the Foreign Office in London to explain the matter, and to be warned that a trade war was not in Argentina’s interests given the current trade imbalance.
“We made clear that such actions against legitimate commercial activity were a matter of concern not just for the UK, but for the EU as a whole, and that we expect the EU to lodge similar concerns with Argentine authorities,” said the British foreign office in a statement.
The European Union reacted swiftly too as one MEP, Nerj Deva, confronted EU foreign policy chief Cathy Ashton over what he called a “potty”scheme which see multi-million pound EU aid going to Argentina. Referring to the $64 million scheme supported by the UK, the MEP said; “Why is EU aid being sent at the same time Argentina is sabre-rattling and threatening the UK over the Falklands? Why are we giving money to the Argentines that they may use to attack the Falkland Islands? It is potty, dotty and mad.”
He pointed out that UK also contributed via the International Monetary Fund to loan schemes for Argentina worth £450 billion in the last 12 years.
The European Union announced that it would begin the appropriate diplomatic proceedings with Argentina to try and solve the trade conflict with the UK.