Identifier
Created
Classification
Origin
07QUITO162
2007-01-19 20:11:00
UNCLASSIFIED//FOR OFFICIAL USE ONLY
Embassy Quito
Cable title:  

INAUGURATION: FRIENDLY BILATERAL WITH FM ESPINOSA

Tags:  PGOV PREL PINR EC 
pdf how-to read a cable
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TO RUCPDOC/DEPT OF COMMERCE WASHDC IMMEDIATE
RUEHC/SECSTATE WASHDC IMMEDIATE 6136
INFO RUEHBO/AMEMBASSY BOGOTA PRIORITY 6359
RUEHCV/AMEMBASSY CARACAS PRIORITY 2306
RUEHLP/AMEMBASSY LA PAZ JAN 0355
RUEHPE/AMEMBASSY LIMA PRIORITY 1322
RUEHGL/AMCONSUL GUAYAQUIL PRIORITY 1738
RHEFDIA/DIA WASHDC
RHMFISS/CDR USSOUTHCOM MIAMI FL
UNCLAS QUITO 000162 

SIPDIS

SENSITIVE
SIPDIS

E.O. 12958: N/A
TAGS: PGOV PREL PINR EC
SUBJECT: INAUGURATION: FRIENDLY BILATERAL WITH FM ESPINOSA


UNCLAS QUITO 000162

SIPDIS

SENSITIVE
SIPDIS

E.O. 12958: N/A
TAGS: PGOV PREL PINR EC
SUBJECT: INAUGURATION: FRIENDLY BILATERAL WITH FM ESPINOSA



1. (SBU) Summary: In a brief but cordial bilateral meeting
on the eve of the inauguration of President Rafael Correa,
Secretary of Commerce Carlos Gutierrez met with Foreign

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Minister-designate Maria Fernanda Espinosa on January 14.
Both agreed that more unites our countries than divides them,
and that frank dialogue based in mutual respect is the best
means to deepen areas of mutual interest. Espinosa expressed
GOE interest in USG treatment of Ecuadorian residents, ATPDEA
extension, and continued USG assistance programs. Secretary
Gutierrez emphasized USG goodwill toward the entering
government, laid down his own marker on unhelpful rhetoric,
and offered his commitment to help maintain friendly
relations. End Summary.

Background
--------------


2. (SBU) The Secretary of Commerce, visiting Ecuador as the
chief of the USDel to the Correa inauguration, was
accompanied by Ambassador Jewell, Commerce DAS Walter
Bastian, and PolChief (notetaker). The meeting, which
started late and was constrained by other events, lasted
approximately twenty minutes. Espinosa was joined by MFA
Coordinator General Rafael Paredes, who she introduced as her
VFM-designate. Press photographers covered the opening of
the meeting.

Warm Welcome
--------------


3. (SBU) Espinosa warmly welcomed Gutierrez,s visit as head
of the USDel to the inauguration, expressing GOE appreciation
and emphasizing the &enormous positive agenda8 bringing
Ecuador and the United States together. The Secretary
reciprocated the warm greeting, saying he came to Ecuador to
signal &above all, USG respect of Ecuador,s importance and
sovereignty,8 agreeing that the two countries have much in
common and much to be proud of. He expressed optimism that
those who wished to divide us would not succeed. He
described his own heritage as an example of the growing bonds
which unite our increasingly integrated hemisphere.

Ties that Bind
--------------


4. (SBU) Espinosa reciprocated the sentiment, emphasizing
her willingness to maintain &frank, open and permanent
dialogue with the U.S.,8 already begun with the Ambassador.
Relations with the U.S. are especially important to the GOE,

she said, not only because the U.S. is Ecuador,s largest
trade partner, but also because so many Ecuadorians now live
there. The GOE is very interested that Ecuadorians receive
fair treatment in the U.S., she said, and welcomes the
orientation of immigration reforms currently being discussed
in the United States. Another tie that binds us, she said,
is that of education represented in countless people,
including herself (a Rutgers Ph.D.) and president-elect
Correa (a U. Illinois Ph.D.),who had studied in the United
States.


5. (SBU) Espinosa expressed Ecuador,s gratitude for the
important assistance the USG has extended over the years, but
noted with concern that aid levels are on the decline due to
competing demands. &Please do not forget Latin America,8
she said, citing USAID,s important support for the
environment, protection of the Galapagos Islands, and
development of Ecuador,s northern border region near
Colombia. She expressed appreciation for the recent visit by
CoDel Reid, saying the new government was very optimistic
about the possibility of ATPDEA extension and continued trade
relations over the longer term.

Agreeing to Disagree, Respectfully
--------------


6. (SBU) While some issues will inevitably divide us,
Espinosa continued, the new government firmly believes that
dialogue is the most appropriate way to overcome them. She
used Colombia as an example of a country with which they have
a significant disagreement right now but which they hope to
solve with dialogue. Secretary Gutierrez agreed that frank
dialogue was most effective, suggesting also that public
statements are important, and that harmful rhetoric could set
back relations unnecessarily.

Looking Outward
--------------


7. (SBU) Turning to Ecuador,s regional aspirations,
Espinosa said the Correa Government wanted to &radiate peace
and integration8 throughout the region. She hoped to be
able to take advantage of is strategic position to play a
special role to advance efforts at integration beyond just
lowering tarriffs to rebuilding the Community of Andean
Nations, promoting interdependence by extending
infrastructure and energy networks, and opening the continent
to services. &There is much more to do,8 she said, and
Ecuador welcomes the collaboration of the United States.
Secretary Gutierrez agreed to the benefits of openness and

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encouraged the GOE to integrate economically with its
neighbors and beyond, citing U.S. membership beyond NAFTA to
ASEAN.


8. (SBU) In closing, Espinosa regretted that the meeting was
short by necessity, pledging to maintain frank and permanent
dialogue with the USG through the Ambassador. The Secretary
thanked the FM-designate for the meeting, saying the U.S.
wished to remain a friend to Ecuador, and that Ecuador could
count him among its many friends in the United States.
JEWELL