The next step in China-LAC links

By Jorge Heine
0 Comment(s)Print E-mail China Daily, January 9, 2015
Adjust font size:

The challenge, then, is to adapt and make the most of this new environment. And the whole point of institutionalizing China-LAC links is to move beyond trans-Pacific links based mostly on trade, to deeper and stronger ones, adding investment, technology transfer and cooperation across a vast array of fields. This is a key purpose of the first China-CELAC Foreign Ministers' Forum.

CELAC, the Community of Latin American and Caribbean States, launched in 2010, embodies Latin American regionalism at its best: it brings together all countries from the Rio Grande to Patagonia, allowing LAC to speak in one voice and to develop a common agenda with counterparts like China. One of the ambitious goals is to double two-way trade to $500 billion in 10 years; another is to increase Chinese foreign direct investment in LAC to $250 billion.

A key challenge for LAC, whose per capita income is, on average, higher than China's, is to increase productivity. One obstacle is insufficient infrastructure, both physical and digital. The vast spaces of South America need to be inter-connected, and the Atlantic and Pacific coasts linked up to each other. Much as in China, it is the coastal areas that have seen most economic development, with the interior being left behind. Chinese technology, be it in railways, in construction, in telecom or in energy, can do much to overcome this.

Over the past decade China's vast landmass and its huge population have been integrated through bullet trains and mobile telephony. A similar undertaking awaits much of the interior of South America and other parts of the region.

The end of the commodity super-cycle offers the opportunity for a major upgrading of Sino-LAC links, in which investment flows and broad-based cooperation are added to trade as the main drivers of the world's most dynamic region, the Asia Pacific.

The author is the ambassador of Chile to China.


Follow on Twitter and Facebook to join the conversation.
   Previous   1   2  

Print E-mail Bookmark and Share

Go to Forum >>0 Comment(s)

No comments.

Add your comments...

  • User Name Required
  • Your Comment
  • Enter the words you see:   
    Racist, abusive and off-topic comments may be removed by the moderator.
Send your storiesGet more from