R. Viswanathan

R. Viswanathan

Former Distinguished Fellow, India-Latin America

R. Viswanathan is the former Indian Ambassador to Argentina, Uruguay and Paraguay (2007-2012). He was earlier the Ambassador to Venezuela and served as the first Consul General of India in Sao Paulo, Brazil. He has headed the Ministry of External Affairs’ division on Latin America and the Caribbean, as well as its Investment and Trade Promotion Division.  He has specialised in Latin America since 1996 and has been a regular contributor to newspapers and business journals, besides giving lectures on the subject at think tanks and universities across India, Latin America and the United States. He speaks Spanish and Portuguese. A self-confessed Latinophile, Ambassador Viswanathan is an avid reader of Latin American literature and admirer of Latino culture. He is fluent in Tamil, Spanish, English, Portuguese and Portuñol.

Engagement of India with Latin American countries

Last modified: June 20, 2017

Recent projects

Elections in Latin America: a review
9 January 2015

Elections in Latin America: a review

Ambassador R. Viswanathan, Distinguished Fellow, Latin America Studies Programme, Gateway House, identifies the overarching trend in all the 2014 elections in South America and what they mean for the region going forward.

Expectations from the Modi Government
1 January 2015

Expectations from the Modi Government

What has been the change in perception of India with the coming of the center-right government under Narendra Modi. Ambassador Viswanathan, Distinguished Fellow, Latin American Studies provides the 2015 expectations with special reference to Latin America

Fidel Castro with Nixon Courtesy: Getty Images
19 December 2014 Gateway House

Cuba: end of isolation

The U.S. has finally ended its outdated policy of isolating Cuba. It is a triumph for the proud and courageous Cubans who have withstood so many overt and covert destabilisation attempts by the U.S. It is also a victory for Latin America which has opposed the U.S. embargo and advocated normalization of relations with Cuba
Uruguay elections_Tabarez Courtesy: Matilde Campodonico/AP
12 December 2014 Gateway House

Left consolidates in Latin America

The reelection of the Left in the Uruguayan election highlights a re-consolidation of the power of the Latin American Left. The pro-poor policies of the Leftist governments in much of South America have lifted millions out of poverty. The result: the creation of a middle class that has strengthened the region’s democratic stability and created more opportunities for business
evo m Courtesy: Alrio.com
22 October 2014 Gateway House

Evo Morales wins Bolivia again

The re-election of Evo Morales as Bolivia's president in the recent elections is a recognition of his success in emancipating the poor indigenous people of the country and economic management of the country. It is also an inspiration and matter of pride for the indigenous people of the whole of Latin America, as well those of the world

brazilelections Courtesy: Wikimedia
10 October 2014 Gateway House

Brazil elections: turning left or right?

Since none of the candidates won the required 50% majority in the Brazilian presidential elections held October 5, there will be a second round on October 26 between the centre-left President Dilma Rouseff and centre-right Aecio Neves. As of now, polls predict a Rouseff win - but like India, the Brazilian electorate is known for throwing up surprises

marina silva Courtesy: wikimedia commons
10 September 2014 Gateway House

The rise of Marina Silva

Brazilian president Dilma Rouseff's bid for re-election has been ambushed in just two weeks by activist Marina Silva who is now predicted to win the October elections. If elected, Marina is likely to continue with the pro-poor policies of the current government, and she has already shown a keen interest in foreign policy. PM Modi will find Marina more proactive and forthcoming than Rouseff