President of Russia Vladimir Putin is on a 6 day-tour of Latin American countries and energy is at the top of his agenda. After his first stop in the Caribbean island of Cuba, Mr. Putin arrived in Argentina to meet and hold talks with President Cristina Kirchner; nuclear energy was one the key topics under discussion and cooperation agreements were signed between the two sides.
In 2009, Argentina and Russia forged a strategic partnership during the visit of the former President Dmitri Medveded. Only last year the trade between the two countries surged almost 20% and President Putin believes there is room to strengthen the ties even more. President Cristina Kirchner praised the strong political unity between the two countries in the past few years, particularly regarding the situation in the Middle East and the global markets. President Putin’s visit to Cuba, Argentina and Brazil responds to Russian ambitions to increase its influence in the region by forging political and economic bonds with Latin American countries. In a gesture of good will, he wrote off 32 billion dollars of Cuba’s debt to Russia.