UK seeks new opportunities in Uruguay after Brexit.
British ambassador to Uruguay, Ian Duddy, gave an interview with El Observador, where he touched on a number of topics important to both nations, including Brexit and the “new opportunities” he says the United Kingdom will have.
Currently the diplomat in Montevideo is the highest representative of his nation. He was head of the British mission to the United Nations in Geneva and worked in collaboration with the Uruguayan delegation on human rights issues.
In this interview he was asked about his expectations regarding his arrival in Uruguay and he replied that between his homeland and the South American country there have always been bilateral relations with a lot of history and that his objective will be to deepen and strengthen that relationship even further.
“I am very interested in teaching English and opportunities to study abroad. The whole subject of education and English culture is something I would like to promote because I believe we have similar values. This year we have 29 Uruguayan scholars who are studying in England. Last year there were 30. That is a significant increase over the last few years and I would like to maintain that. And as ambassador it will also be my mission to try to deepen the commercial relations between the two countries”, he said.
Regarding the possibilities of a free trade agreement with Uruguay, he said that the first prerequisite is to leave the European Union “because as long as we remain part of that club, we must comply with their rules. The prime minister was clear that the vote for Brexit has to be respected. ” He also said that they are in a moment of transition that will take approximately two years.
He clarified that the British government “was clear and that he will be looking for new opportunities” and that his position will last for four years “so after two years I am sure that we will look for new possibilities”.
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Regarding education, he said that it is important to show that they have initiatives to welcome people from abroad and that they are open to collaborations not only in Europe, but in Latin American nations like Uruguay. “I believe that this country has a good education capacity with respect to other countries and there are students who can take advantage of this by taking a course in English institutions with a significant international prestige, such as London School of Economics, Oxford, and Cambridge. We appreciate the number of students requesting scholarships to study abroad and we have seen that there is a great demand for available places. All this we could do also with the support of ANII (National Research and Innovation Agency) and that is an example of our cooperation.”
Ambasaddor Duddy was also queried regarding his opinion of Uruguay’s participation as a non-permanent member of the United Nations Security Council. In this role it has forcefully developed a human rights agenda, with a special forucs on the protection of refugees.
He noted that the South American country is playing an important role in Latin America in representing the diverse bloc. He also indicated that due to their reputation as a leader in human rights, Uruguay has a unique role to influence the policy discussion, and serve as a role model for other nations. “I think the Uruguayan diplomats have a very good reputation. What I saw in Geneva is that with a very small team they achieved something very important, such as the resolution to protect sexual minorities”.
He also recalled that thanks to the history of his country and Uruguay, they have a close relationship because they are both “progressive”.
Source: El Observador