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Reyser: "Japanese investment in Argentina could grow substantially"

19 February 2018
Información para la Prensa N°: 

Japanese companies seek to invest in energy and mining

Within the framework of a Trade Mission by a large Japanese business delegation to Argentina, the Secretary for International Economic Relations, Horacio Reyser, opened the Seminar on Mineral and Hydrocarbon Resources at the Palacio San Martín, in order to address investment and mutual cooperation opportunities in those sectors. In this context, officials from the Ministry of Energy and Mining and the Ministry of Finance attended the meeting.

Secretary Reyser highlighted the bilateral relationship between both nations, with this year marking the 120th anniversary of its establishment, and underscored, in particular, the importance of this investment definition stage for Argentina.  Argentina and Japan have been working towards a Bilateral Investment Treaty, which is in the final stages of negotiation and which both countries consider highly necessary. The Foreign Ministry official stated that, looking forward, there is still work to be done as regards potential partnerships between Argentine and Japanese companies, and noted that Japanese investment in Argentina could grow substantially.

The Japanese delegation, headed by the Ambassador to Argentina, Noriteru Fukushima, was comprised of representatives from the Japanese Ministry of Economy, Trade and Industry (METI), as well as from leading energy, mining, gas and oil companies.

Ambassador Fukushima underscored that the reforms being implemented by the new Argentine Government have bolstered Japan's confidence and have encouraged the country to conclude key investment treaty negotiations and begin drafting other treaties.

 In two years, Japan has announced investments amounting to USD 1.6 billion in Argentina and expects that figure to double or triple in four years' time. The diplomat reaffirmed that the Japanese intend to work hard and contribute to development in the aforementioned sectors.

During the seminar, the Argentine delegates from the Ministries of Finance and Energy presented an economic outlook and investment opportunities for the next few years.  Both countries are working on three main goals in order to attain sustainable growth: firstly, to achieve macroeconomic stability by curbing inflation and eliminating the fiscal deficit; secondly, to cut red tape and reduce the tax burden; in this regard, the tax reform will facilitate the elimination of distortive taxes in 5 years; and, lastly, to foster competition through an intelligent insertion into the world. The Chief Advisor of the Secretariat for Economic Policy of the Argentine Republic, Guido Sandleris, stated that progress in these goals will boost investment and allow Argentina to grow steadily in order to improve living conditions for the Argentine people.

The Japanese delegation is expected to visit Vaca Muerta and the provinces of Salta and Catamarca, with a view to exploring the potential and investment opportunities there. In this regard, the Secretary for Strategic Energy Planning of the Argentine Republic, Daniel Redondo, noted that Vaca Muerta requires USD 10 billion in investments per annum and is currently far from that investment level.  We need more concrete investments in the next 15 or 20 years, as Vaca Muerta is a long-term resource that requires capital, technology and commitment from companies.

The seminar was also attended by the Undersecretary for Mining Development of the Argentine Republic, Mario Osvaldo Capello, the National Director for Mining Promotion, Daniel Jerez, and the Vice President of Agro-industry and Industrial Goods of the Argentine Investment and International Trade Agency, Francisco Uranga.

The Japanese companies and entities present at the seminar which were part of the mission included JETRO, JICA, JOGMEC, JX Nippon, Maxell, Mitsubishi, Marubeni, Chiyoda Corporation, Mitsui & Co, Sumitomo Corporation, Hanwa Co, Toyo Engineering Corporation, INPEX Corporation, Japan Oil, Gas and Metals Corporation, Nippon KOEI, Itochu, Sojitz, Toyota, Nikkei Inc., Chori Co. and NHK.

The seminar ended with a networking event, followed by a forum for B2B meetings between Japanese and Argentine companies.

Argentina is the 5th largest Latin American exporter to Japan. Furthermore, the number of Japanese companies operating in Argentina has recently increased from 50 to 74. Investment stock and announcements combined amount to USD 1.624 billion, especially in the automobile and mining (lithium) industries. Other examples of this new stage of bilateral relations include the Bilateral Investment Treaty and the Customs Cooperation Agreement, which are in the final stages of negotiation.


Press release No. 056/18

Press Office: 4819-7375 / 8296 / 7388