Outgoing President Oscar Arias replaced all three of the embassies he closed midway through his term with new ones in countries he says are more aligned with Costa Rica´s strategic economic interests.
Last Tuesday, he announced the opening of an embassy in New Delhi, in the heart of one of the world´s most important emerging markets. The new embassy also offers Costa Rica a foothold in Asia.
“I have said this often: This is the century of the Asian countries,” Arias said yesterday at an interview in his home in Rohrmoser. “Regrettably, the 21 st century is not the century for Latin America, through our own fault.”
Arias made the decision to open an office in New Delhi in December of 2009 to further tap into Asiatic markets, and with the hope of bringing more cooperation and investment to Costa Rica.
We are establishing diplomatic relations with China “because it´s an economically powerful country,” Arias said. “We also need to (forge relations) with India because it´s another country that is very powerful and important.”
Arias said yesterday that he is leaving the naming of an ambassador to India to incoming President Laura Chinchilla, but former Singapore Ambassador Javier Escalante – who Arias described as “young, but very qualified” – will be the ambassador in the new embassy in Doha, Qatar.
In January 2008, Arias closed embassies in Bolivia, Paraguay and the Czech Republic, as well as consulates in Puerto Rico and Chicago, for financial reasons. He opened an embassy in Beijing, China in November 2007.
The New Delhi Embassy
Address: C-25 Anand Niketan 3rd Floor. New Delhi, India
Phone: +91 9953608810.
Office hours: 9 a.m. to 4 p.m., Monday-Friday
Administrative assistant: Sangita Majumdar