UN Agency: Caribbean and Latin America Must Look to China to Secure Their Economic Futures

December 1, 2014

In a recently released report, the United Nations Economic Commission on Latin America and the Caribbean (ECLAC), asserts that strengthening trade and economic cooperation ties with China offers the best hope for a secure future to the nations of the Caribean and Central and South America, Telesur-TV reported Nov. 27.

"In all the economies of the Latin American region, above all for the South Americans, the trade link with China has become a relevant factor because of the possitilities of growth, employment and macroeconomic stability," the report states. China's reforms in these areas, as well as its investments in Latin America and the Caribbean, "take on a more important role."

ECLAC recommends that these ties be strengthened with China and "allied nations" through Celac (the Community of Latin American and Caribbean States), which will celebrate the official launching of the Celac-China Forum in Beijing early in 2015. Through this, ECLAC adds, the nations of Latin America and the Caribbean will have the opportunity to strengthen their ties with China and discuss future cooperation. Key priorities, it adds, will be bilateral investment in infrastructure and urbanization, according to Telesur-TV.

ECLAC also recommends that the Common Market of the South (Mercosur)—Venezuela, Argentina, Paraguay, Uruguay and Brazil—and the Pacific Alliance (Chile, Peru, Colombia, Mexico) also expand their ties with China and the ASEAN nations.

Reflecting the density of activity taking place in the region, Xinhua reported Nov. 26 on the just-concluded III China-Latin America Academic Forum, held in Santiago, Chile, during which twenty Chinese academics and researchers met with their counterparts from Mexico, Chile, Ecuador, Peru, Argentina, and Brazil, to discuss expanding cooperation between China and Latin America. Chile's former ambassador to China, Fernando Reyes Matta, director of the Center of Latin American Studies on China at the Andres Bello University, told Xinhua that "China has expressed its political enthusiasm in accepting Celac as its counterpart with which to dialogue on the strategic issues and advance in our common development."