Founder Editor Tazeen Akhtar..

By: Saba Akhtar - Rodolfo J. Martin-Saravia is the current ambassador of Argentina to Pakistan. He has been ambassador since August 2004, and has also served as the non-resident Argentine ambassador to Afghanistan and Tajikistan since 2005 and 2011 respectively. In March 2014, he was conferred the Hilal-e-Pakistan, the second highest civilian award in Pakistan, by President Mamnoon Hussain for his services to Argentina–Pakistan relations.

Q: Excellency, You have been serving here in Pakistan for last 11 years, so my 1st question is how you feel to work as your country’s representative in Pakistan?

H.E: Indeed, I have spent the longest term of my Foreign Service career about 11 years with Pakistan, Honestly, I really enjoyed this entire period, which I spent here in your country. The people of Pakistan have honored me a lot and absolutely I want to say thanks to Argentinean and Pakistani governments who trust upon me. You know what; I served in this country during the eight years long ruling era of former General ® Pervaiz Musharaf, then five years with the government of Pakistan people’s Party  (PPP) and now with government of Nawaz Sharif. Undoubtedly I really enjoyed during the entire period of eleven years of my service in Pakistan and served both Argentine and Pakistan with dedication and honesty.

Q: You served in Pakistan, when a dictator was ruling over the country and now u entered in 2nd democratic term after the demise of dictatorship, so how you evaluate the performance of both political systems? Who performed the best, a dictator or a democratic ruler?

H.E:  The both either dictatorship or democratic political system have some positive and negative factors as well, However the democratic system is the best solution to address and facilitate the public grievances. The strengthen democracy in any country is the key factor of economic growth, Frankly speaking! I got the opportunity to work more effectively during the democratic period here in Pakistan, “The Democracy in itself has a complete system to change the entire world”, I believe. Indeed the transformation for democratic governments during 2013 General Election is a significance achievement for Pakistan.

Q: Excellency, please do share your major achievements during the long service period of eleven years, you spent in Pakistan?

H.E: I think that the one of the major achievements is to build a bridge between the people of Argentine and Pakistan through cross cultural visits. I remember that there were long distances in the past decades between both countries, however I succeeded to reduce these distances and made it easy through the cultural exchange programs.

Q: You were decorated with country’s second highest civil award “Hilal-e-Pakistan” to acknowledge your services, how you comment on this particular achievement in your entire service career?

H.E: Thank you very much for such a wonderful question, basically I am very proud to be decorated with highest civil award of Pakistan, it is not only an honor for me but for Argentinean government too. I am also thankful to the president of Pakistan Mamnoon Hussain to honor me with Hilal-e-Pakistan. Here is worth mentioning an interesting aspect about this highest civil award that it was the 1st time in the history of Pakistan that Hilal-e-Pakistan was awarded to any serving Ambassador, which is really honor for me.

Q: Argentinean investors have been made investments in different business sectors including Telecom and Pharmaceutical, What efforts by your good office are being made to attract the more Argentinean investors to explore the business opportunities in Pakistan?

H.E: Whether the investments by Argentineans in Pakistan are not such a huge, however they have made economic activities with Pharmaceutical, Information Technology and Telecom sectors. We have applied for License with Pakistan Telecom Authority (PTA), once it will be approved a huge investment will flow in Pakistan. However the office Economic Counselor remains intact with concerned authorities to generate bilateral economic opportunities with Pakistan.

Q: Argentine is one among the economically growing countries, what steps/measures have been taken by Argentine to ride forward from good towards best?

H.E: Some years ago, we were the 6th largest economic power of the world, unfortunately the scenario latter on changed with time to time, however again we are moving speedily to improve our economy. Last year, Argentine generated the revenue of $3 billion only from Tourism sector. I believe that Pakistan is also a wonderful country like Argentine and enrich with heart touching landscapes, mountaineer ranges, ancient civilizations and many more attractions for foreign tourists, Pakistan can speedily improved its economy by utilization the resources of tourism.

Q: Excellency, for the promotion of World’s costliest game “Football” in Pakistan, Is it possible to invite the world’s best Argentinean football players Messy or Meridona in Pakistan to encourage the talent associated with this particular game?

H.E: This is an interesting question however the answer is! None of the facilities to play Football are earthed in Pakistan; there are not sufficient quality playgrounds so what will do the Messy and Meridona, to produce the good footballers there is a need to improve the facilities relating this particular game.

Q: European countries have strict visit visa policy, what about The Argentine? Has your country been exercising the same job in this case?

H.E: Our policy in this case is not strict such as in other European countries, however once the applicant proves himself as a genuine tourist, we grant the visa.

Q: What kind of Pakistani cuisines you love to use to?

H.E: Almost all Pakistani foods are delicious, but I love to enjoy Biryani with Ketchup.

Q: What are your impressions about Pakistan and Pakistani people?

H.E: I would say, Pakistanis are a great nation and have great potential. They are hospitable; kind and cooperative. I must commend your political and military leadership the way they have been dealing with the terrorism problem. We duly recognize sacrifices rendered in this process and would like to see the international community extending more and more assistance to Pakistan. Pakistan has also a role to play in the region as well. In the end I would again reiterate my commitment and desire to promote and strengthen Argentine-Pakistan relations.