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Wednesday, 23.07.2014, 14:59
Latvia and Colombia are worthy OECD candidates
|Monica Lanzetta Mutis and Edgars Rinkevics. Riga, 4.03.2013. Photo: flickr.com|
The foreign minister indicated that Latvia regarded the OECD as the most significant forum of global economic policy making; therefore, OECD membership is one of Latvia's foreign policy priorities. The minister also emphasized that Latvia advocated an equal approach for candidate countries within and outside the EU. Rinkevics and Lanzetta were of the same opinion that both countries met all the requirements and were worthy of becoming OECD members; thus, the officials were hopeful of a decision positive for both, LETA was informed by the Foreign Ministry's information and public relations department.
During the meeting, Rinkevics also confirmed Latvia’s interest in expanding relations with the Latin American countries. As the parties discussed the potential for Latvian-Colombian bilateral economic and political cooperation as well as the EU’s dialogue with Latin America, Rinkevics highlighted the advantages of the EU-Colombia/Peru free trade agreements and the process of its ratification in national parliaments. Both sides recognized that, with the treaty taking effect, growth in mutual export volumes would follow, facilitated by the canceling of tariffs, also for Latvia, on such vital export commodities like timber and timber products, chemicals and foodstuffs.
The Colombian vice-minister for foreign affairs also had a meeting with the Foreign Ministry State Secretary and the Head of the Economic and Bilateral Relations Directorate Janis Mazeiks to discuss cooperation within international organizations, enhancing the bilateral legal framework, developments in the Latin American region and the EU’s Eastern Neighborhood, as well as cooperation in environmental protection.
Colombia recognized Latvia’s independence on July 8, 1922 and the restoration of Latvian statehood, on September 6, 1991. Diplomatic relations between Latvia and Colombia were established on July 19, 1995. Since 2006, Latvia has had its Honorary Consul in Colombia, Marta Arango. The post of the Honorary Consul of Colombia in Latvia has been held by Roberts Binde since 2005. The then Foreign Minister of Colombia Carolina Barco was for a visit in Latvia between January 31 and February 1, 2006, the Foreign Ministry informs.