interview H.E. Solvita Aboltina Ambassador Latvia and Italy, economy, prtnerships, bilateral agreements, made in Italy export, Latvia import

Photo: Rome - The President of the Italian Republic Sergio Mattarella with H.E. Solvita Aboltina, Ambassador of Latvia to Italy

By Ivan De Stefano

Future predictions of women in diplomacy and in 
international relations?

The role of women in modern society and diplomacy is a topical issue. Before returning to diplomacy in 2018, I spent sixteen years in politics as Minister of Justice, Vice-President and President of the Parliament and chairing one of the largest political parties in the country.
I am wary over the quota system, believing that professional knowledge and capacity of the individual prevail, but in the most countries too little has been done to give women equal opportunities, especially in welfare issues. Another argument is the traditional role of gender in society and the public opinion towards men and women performing specific positions. In Latvia, women and men can hold any professional role equally, despite of a certain disproportion. For example, in the Foreign Service, women are the majority of the staff, but if we look at the ambassador's corps, only 18 are lady ambassadors. Anyway, we are proud of being represented by them in a large number of European countries (Austria, Italy, Czech Republic, Hungary, Finland, Denmark, Germany, the Netherlands, Sweden, UK) and other foreign countries (Kazakhstan, Georgia, China and Japan). Latvia have a high percentage of women in the court system and a good representation of women among university professors.Moreover, Latvian women held the highest State representative positions as the President of the Republic, Prime Minister and Speaker of Parliament. Such examples inspire young women to set and achieve high goals
How important is the collaboration of women in diplomacy and foreign policy to the new global challenges?

Any professional and intellectual group analysing facts or issues can contribute to a better solution to the common problems, as think tanks or similar groups of women diplomats. Women are also able to look at rational things emotionally and from a slightly different
perspective, which can be useful in the context of finding solutions to new global challenges.

What strategies your government adopting to facilitate and intensify Italian investments and partnerships?

Last two years FDI growth has been continuing despite Covid pandemic. Government's efforts to make Latvia a more attractive location for FDI have been paying off. Creating the world's one of the best ecosystems for startups supported by advanced digital infrastructure that has brought to Latvia numerous foreign startups is just one of many improvements that contributed to a positive outcome. Reopening the Representative Office of Investment and Development Agency of Latvia in Italy is expected to attract new Italian investors and facilitate the expansion of the businesses that have already been working in Latvia putting in the centre sectors, like biomedicine, smart cities, photonics and others that are essential for future development of both countries.

Which investments your government planned to increase the educational tools and cultural exchanges of Latvians?

Digitalization of education process, large scale investments in the physical infrastructure of culture, sports and science as well excellent connectivity by air and soon by rail makes Latvia an appealing partner for co-operation, an inspirational place for cultural exchanges.
Undeniably continues investments in exchange programs of school children and students will continue to be one of the central axes ensuring that youth in Latvia is wise, culturally educated and open-minded