RIO DE JANEIRO: Chinese President Xi Jinping’s recent trip to Latin America, the second in 13 months, demonstrated the important role Latin America plays in China’s overall diplomacy and brought new opportunity to the bilateral ties.
During Xi’s trip on July 15-23, he attended the sixth summit of BRICS nations - Brazil, Russia, India, China and South Africa - and a conference with Latin American and Caribbean leaders. He also paid state visits to Brazil, Argentina, Venezuela and Cuba. Brazilian President Dilma Rousseff said her meeting with Xi, nearly three hours long, had yielded “exciting” results, stressing that bilateral trade between China and Brazil surpassed 90 billion U.S. dollars in 2013.
China, Brazil and Peru will cooperate to construct a railway running from the Peruvian Pacific coast to the Brazilian Atlantic coast.
The transcontinental railway will play an important role in promoting Brazil’s economic growth and lifting regional development, Rousseff said, pledging to “work together with China and Peru to build this project into a satisfactory one.”
Against the backdrop of the global economic downturn, enhancing economic exchanges between China and Brazil is extremely important, Rousseff said, adding that the two economies are developing in a stable, bright and strategic fashion through Chinese investment in Brazil and deepening cooperation in a wide range of areas.
She said the increasing diversified investment from China will bring Brazil and other Latin American countries a promising future.
Francisco Mauro Brasil de Holanda, director of the East Asia Department in the Brazilian Foreign Ministry, said the great amount of Chinese investment has turned from areas of mining, soybean and oil in the beginning to high technology, car manufacturing and heavy equipment.
The most anticipated cooperation with China is in infrastructure, especially railways and ports, Mauro said.
China owns a mature technological system in infrastructure construction and has achieved great accomplishments in the area, which is exactly what Latin American countries including Brazil long for, he added.
Murilo Ferreira, CEO of Brazil’s Vale, the world’s largest producer and exporter of iron ore, is optimistic about the China-Brazil cooperative relations in the new era.
At the Annual Meeting of China-Brazil Entrepreneurs Committee in July, Ferreira said China is a long-term strategic partner, whose economic development has provided Brazilian mining exports with great opportunity.
Severino Cabral, director of the Brazilian Institute for China and Asia-Pacific Studies, said Xi’s trip was beneficial for Latin America’s politics, diplomacy and economy in 2014.
The consensus reached between Chinese and Latin American leaders will help coordinate concerned parties to build a democratic, multipolar new political and economic order in the world, Cabral said.
It will also help solve thorny issues in security and economic development that developing countries have encountered since the beginning of this century, he said.
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