The new British ambassador to Peru, Kate Harrisson, has praised the status of the Lima 2019 Pan American and Parapan American Games project after her first site visit.
As the British ambassador to Peru, Harrisson will be central to reviewing the progress of preparations for the Games and ensuring the Peruvian and United Kingdom Government-to-Government (G2G) agreement continues to work successfully.
The G2G agreement was sanctioned in April 2017 to help Peru benefit from the UK’s proven history in delivering meaningful economic, social, urban, and sporting legacies from major sporting events.
Harrisson replaces Anwar Choudhury, who has become the new Governor for the Cayman Islands.
Choudhury was considered instrumental in securing the G2G agreement between Peru and the UK.
Catherine Vaughan, the director general of the UK Department of International Trade, and Francine Torbett, the director of international trade in Peru, joined Harrisson on the visit.
During their time in the Peruvian capital, Harrisson, Vaughan and Torbett visited the Pan American Village in the Villa El Salvador district and the Videna sports complex.
After the site visits, Harrisson praised both the speed and quality of the progress being made:
"There has clearly been significant progress made in a short space of time, which is testament to the hard work of the Lima 2019 Organising Committee and the success of the G2G agreement in place," she said.
"Visiting key Lima 2019 sites was a priority for me and I am delighted to have had the opportunity to do so in just my second week in the country.
"It is an honour for the UK to be working hand-in-hand with Peru to deliver what I have no doubt will be a memorable Games."
Harrisson, Vaughan and Torbett toured the construction site of the Pan American Village, where the seven towers will house more than 10,000 athletes during the Games.
Harrisson drew comparisons of the potential legacy at the Village to the legacy at the Athletes' Village used for the London 2012 Olympic Games.
"These buildings will leave a great legacy after the Games, where they will serve as high-quality, accessible and affordable apartments for families in Peru," she said.
"I am confident that we will see the same impact at the Lima 2019 Pan American Village that we have seen in London after the 2012 Games, where the Olympic Park rejuvenated the Stratford area in London."
Lima 2019 President Carlos Neuhaus praised the commitment of Harrisson to the project so early in her new role.
"I would like to thank Ambassador Harrisson and her team for showing such strong commitment to ensuring this project remains on track," he said.
"In the past two years, since we signed the G2G agreement with the UK, we have made astonishing progress and I would like to thank everyone involved for their hard work in this time.
"If we keep this up for the next 14 months, Lima 2019 will be remembered as an outstanding Pan American and Parapan American Games."
Lima 2019 claimed last month that the departure of Peru's President Pedro Pablo Kuczynski will have "no impact" on preparations for next year's Pan American and Parapan American Games.
Kuczynski recently resigned amid a vote-buying scandal in the South American nation.
The 2019 Pan American Games are set to take place from July 26 to August 11, with the Parapan American Games following between August 23 and September 1.