Minister Pandor hosted her Argentinian counterpart, Minister of Science, Technology and Productive Innovation, Dr Lino Barañao yesterday. The Ministers exchanged coffee table books on Operation Phakisa initiatives.

Science and Technology Minister Naledi Pandor had a bilateral meeting with her Argentinian counterpart, the Minister of Science, Technology and Productive Innovation, Dr Lino Barañao, in Pretoria yesterday  (04/04/2017).

While in South Africa, Minister Barañao and his delegation will visit the Council for Scientific and Industrial Research, Nuclear Energy Commission of South Africa and the South African National Space Agency, among other institutions, and will meet with the Operation Phakisa Secretariat.

Pandor and Barañao discussed issues related to science, technology and innovation (STI), taking stock of the implementation of the bilateral agreement signed by the two countries in May 2006, and noting areas that needed attention.  There have been successful research calls involving scientists from the two countries, and an exchange programme for young people.

Another area of mutual interest and potential collaboration is the oceans economy, which is part of South Africa's Operation Phakisa.  Argentina's strategic research programme in the Argentinean Sea is called Pampa Azul.

Minister Pandor expressed the hope that the visit would convince the delegation to continue to strengthen STI relations between the two countries.  Agriculture and the bioeconomy are two areas in which South Africa could learn from Argentina.

Minister Barañao voiced his satisfaction with the progress made with the implementation of the bilateral agreement, adding that it was important to use science and technology for social and economic development.