Peruvian President Martín Vizcarra has met with International Paralympic Committee (IPC) head Andrew Parsons to discuss how the country can best promote the Paralympic values in its society with Lima set to host the Parapan American Games in 2019.
The historic meeting was the first time a President of Peru has welcomed the leader of the Paralympic Movement to Government Palace in Lima.
It was also attended by IPC chief executive Xavier Gonzalez, Lima 2019 President Carlos Neuhaus and Peruvian Paralympic Committee President Lucha Villar.
Vizcarra, who assumed office in March following the impeachment of previous President Pedro Pablo Kuczynski, reaffirmed his support for the work of the Paralympic Movement and set out his Government’s vision of a more inclusive and fair Peruvian society.
He also stressed Peru's commitment to capitalising on the unique opportunity presented by the Lima 2019 Parapan American Games to leave a lasting legacy for the Peruvian people.
"President Vizcarra has a very good understanding of the Lima 2019 project and the great opportunity that the Games represent for Lima and Peru," Parsons said after the meeting.
"Not only a sporting opportunity, but in the case of the Parapans, an opportunity to improve inclusion and accessibility in Lima.
"There is a real feeling that the President wants to grasp this unique opportunity.
"He is aware the challenges that lie ahead but is willing to overcome them.
"I left the meeting feeling impressed.
"Impressed by the President’s knowledge of the whole project and by his willingness to accept our support and recommendations on how to maximise the legacy from the Games."
Neuhaus added: "This meeting underlined the importance our Government attaches to promoting the Paralympic values in Peru and creating a more inclusive society.
"All of us at Lima 2019 are motivated by those same objectives.
"We know that by giving the Americas' greatest Para-sport athletes the perfect stage for inspirational performances, the Lima 2019 Parapan American Games can have a transformative effect on Peru."
Villar, who is also a Lima 2019 Board member, thanked Vizcarra for hosting the meeting.
"We have already thanked him personally for his support and for giving visibility to the Paralympic Movement in our country," she said.
"Today we have taken a big step forward.
"We will keep on moving and won’t stop."
Last week, organisers of the Lima 2019 Parapan American Games were warned to speed up progress in a "number of key areas" in order to realise their full potential.
It followed an inspection visit to the Peruvian capital by an Americas Paralympic Committee delegation led by the body's then interim President, Eduardo Montenegro, along with officials from the IPC.
They received updates on various functional areas relating to the running of the event, due to take place between August 23 and September 1 next year.
A statement afterwards was vague in outlining specific problems, but suggested they relate more to operational matters rather than the planned venues themselves.
Around 1,890 athletes are expected to compete across these 17 sports at the Parapan American Games.
Venue delivery efforts have sped up for Lima 2019 in recent months following concerns last year over the pace of preparation for projects including the Athletes' Village.