Businessman Gerardo Werthein will be Argentine ambassador to the United States, and Daniel Scioli will remain in his position as ambassador to Brazil, Javier Milei said on Wednesday upon returning from his trip to the United States.
“[Werthein] will be our ambassador to the U.S.,” Milei told Radio La Red. Werthein was part of Milei’s delegation to the U.S. and joined him in his recent meeting with top members of the U.S. National Security Council, Jake Sullivan and Juan Gonzalez.
A veterinarian by training, Werthein comes from a business family that owns Grupo Werthein, one of the biggest holdings in Argentina.
Milei also said that his idea is for Scioli to “carry on with his duties” in Brazil. Scioli’s spokesman had already confirmed this to the Herald on Monday.
Future Foreign Minister Diana Mondino confirmed this during an interview with Radio Mitre on Wednesday, saying that Scioli will remain in his position at least until La Libertad Avanza has “a definitive appointment.” She added that Scioli has “an excellent relationship [with Brazil].”
Scioli and Mondino have shared meetings with several Brazilian officials in the past few days. On Sunday, they met with Brazil’s Foreign Minister, Mauro Vieira. Mondino considered the meeting to be important to “dismantle” claims that Milei’s government would “sever [Argentina’s] ties with Brazil.”
During the presidential campaign, Milei said that if he won the election, he would sever all commercial ties with “communist” countries, which he claimed included China and Brazil.
Scioli didn’t confirm he would stay on as ambassador in Brazil, but said that he would be open to helping in any way he can once Milei’s takes office.
“I will go back to Argentina [on December 10], and then the president-elect will announce his cabinet and determine who’ll be in charge of each embassy,” he told A24 news channel on Tuesday.
Scioli, a Peronist who was Cristina Kirchner’s vice president during her first administration (2003-2007), has been the Argentine ambassador to Brazil since September 2022. Scioli was governor of Buenos Aires province (2007-2015) and ran for president in 2015, but lost to Mauricio Macri.
“If I can be [of help], I will be helping anywhere,” he told A24 news channel on Tuesday.
He added that he spoke with Mondino about Milei’s intentions of preserving the good relationship Argentina and Brazil have.
President Alberto Fernández harshly criticized Scioli for deciding to remain in his position during Milei’s government. “I can’t understand how you can represent an Alberto Fernández government and then Javier Milei’s in the same way,” he told Urbana Play radio station on Tuesday.