DE RUEHBU #1676/01 2361935
ZNR UUUUU ZZH
O 241935Z AUG 07
FM AMEMBASSY BUENOS AIRES
TO RUEHC/SECSTATE WASHDC IMMEDIATE 9025
INFO RHMFISS/CDR USSOCOM MACDILL AFB FL//SCJ2//
UNCLAS BUENOS AIRES 001676
STATE FOR INR/R/MR, I/GWHA, WHA, WHA/PDA, WHA/BSC,
CDR USSOCOM FOR J-2 IAD/LAMA
E.O. 12958: N/A
TAGS: KPAO OPRC KMDR PREL
SUBJECT: MEDIA REACTION; CRISTINA KIRCHNER'S UPCOMING TRIP TO THE
US; WORLD FINANCIAL CRISIS AND ARGENTINE ECONOMY; DOHA ROUND AND
INTERNATIONAL TRADE; 08/24/07
1. SUMMARY STATEMENT
Local papers carry opinion pieces on Argentine First Lady and
presidential candidate Cristina Kirchner's upcoming trip to the US;
the impact of the world financial crisis on Argentina's economy; and
the alleged failure of the Doha Round as well as current conditions
in the international trade system.
2. OPINION PIECES AND EDITORIALS
- "Cristina tests herself in New York in the 'hottest' segment of
(Argentina's) election campaign"
Ana Baron, Washington-based correspondent for leading "Clarn,"
writes (08/24) "The Kirchners' upcoming trip to New York in
September will be Cristina's first litmus test in the US since she
was appointed presidential candidate, and it will be a good
opportunity for Kirchner to start practicing his next role of
"The two of them will attend the UN General Assembly, in which
Kirchner will give an address on September 24, although all interest
is focused on Cristina's agenda and whether it will include some
contact with members of the US Department of State. In fact,
Assistant Secretary for Latin American Affairs Tom Shannon always
uses the UN Annual Assembly to meet with Latin American leaders.
"'Clarn' was able to confirm that this year it will be Cristina and
not Kirchner who will give an address during the lunch organized by
the Americas Society, which is attended by US diplomats and
"... Will Shannon take this occasion to get closer to Cristina or
the other way round? An Argentine diplomat told 'Clarn' that no one
knows yet whether Cristina will do on this.
"According to the ongoing speculation in the Argentine media, the US
is expecting Cristina to make the first gesture of rapprochement,
although this disregards that US diplomats' pragmatism could make
for a surprise. They also disregard the fact that, if Cristina wins
the elections, President Bush will have to call her to congratulate
her, which could be a good opportunity to start improving
"The prevailing climate in New York regarding Argentina is not as
favorable as last year. The INDEC scandal, the mysterious
cash-filled suitcase, the money found in former Minister Felisa
Miceli's bathroom, and conflicts in Santa Cruz have damaged
confidence in the country. Shannon could choose to distance himself
(from Cristina) to avoid giving the impression that he is supporting
her bid for presidency."
- "(Argentine) businessmen promote changes in the country's
Marcelo Bonelli, economic columnist of leading "Clarn," writes
(08/24) "According to Argentine businessmen, Argentina will have to
make economic adjustments in order to maintain its current growth
"... Those adjustments include a price and salary accord, the return
to a real fiscal surplus, an anti-inflation plan based on cost
containment and fiscal discipline, a selective public rates
adjustment policy, recognition of the energy crisis, an increase in
productive investment, rebuilding credibility through an overall
reform of the National Statistics Institute (INDEC), reaching a debt
deal with the Paris Club, putting the country's ties to the G7 on a
safe track, and putting an end to the pending dispute with
"... Regarding the global financial crisis, President Nstor
Kirchner has a clear forecast - financial instability will continue
until the end of his term in office. He came to this conclusion
after having read a confidential report that was drafted with
information from the US Federal Reserve and the Central Bank of
Europe. According to the report, the US Federal Reserve mishandled
the financial crisis and now liquidity problems have become
'solvency' problems for many banks, which previews instability.
"The Argentine Government is concerned about some information
included in the report that one of the main European banks has
serious problems of insolvency, which, if not tamed, could spark
another international financial chaos."
- "Doha Round - toward a 'new' international trade system"
Business-financial "BAE" front-pages an opinion piece by Mario
Rapoport, prestigious professor of Economic History at National
University of Buenos Aires, who opines (08/24) "Six years have
already passed since the Doha Development Program was launched.
Since then, many difficulties and failures have occurred - the
collapse of the 2003 Cancun Ministerial Conference, the 2004 Geneva
amendment of the general framework, the desperate moves to revive
the Doha agenda at the 2004 Hong Kong Ministerial Conference (which
led to the suspension of WTO negotiations in 2006), and the recent
rupture of G-7 conversations in Postdam (Germany)...
"The Doha Round should have been the round of 'development.'
Nevertheless, the world has been far from reaching a set of
multilateral trade deals aimed at strengthening the developing
countries' ability to create working positions, fight poverty and
build sustainable economies.
"The Doha Program basically served the interests of Northern
industrialized powers, which attempt to broaden the access of their
multinational corporations to Southern markets...
"... The Doha model and agenda failed in their attempt to increase
WTO credibility and the crisis appears as a window of opportunity to
reverse the current scheme of international trade negotiations,
although the lack of clear rules could pave the way for bilateral
and multilateral deals that could further jeopardize conditions for
the Southern countries."
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