Cooperation between China and Peru achieves fruitful results: Xi
Boluarte's visit to China to expand cooperation, signals Peru's strategic autonomy: experts
Published: Jun 28, 2024 10:45 PM
China-Peru relations. Photo: VCG

China-Peru relations. Photo: VCG

Chinese President Xi Jinping held talks with Peruvian President Dina Boluarte on Friday in Beijing. Xi said cooperation in various fields between China and Peru has achieved fruitful results. Chinese enterprises have played an important role in Peru's economic development. China attaches great importance to the development of China-Peru relations, and is willing elevate the comprehensive strategic partnership with Peru to a new level.

Boluarte's "fruitful" visit to China not only expanded cooperation between China and Peru to new areas, such as green and digital economies, but also demonstrated the Latin American country's growing strategic autonomy in conducting pragmatic collaboration with China despite increasing pressure from the US, said Chinese experts.

China supports Peru in following a development path that suits its national conditions, and is willing to firmly support each other and promote friendly cooperation between China and Peru, said Xi. 

Both sides should fully utilize the role of the intergovernmental economic cooperation strategic dialogue mechanism, align China's support for the high-quality construction of the Belt and Road Initiative (BRI) with Peru's development needs, coordinate and promote cooperation in the fields of mining, energy, manufacturing, agriculture, and expand cooperation in new energy, digital economy, artificial intelligence, digital healthcare and other emerging fields, Xi said.

More high-quality Peruvian products are welcome to enter the Chinese market, and Peru is expected to provide a good legal and policy environment for Chinese companies to invest in and cooperate in Peru in the long term, said Xi.

He said both countries should work together to ensure the timely completion of the Chancay port, which will become a new land-sea channel between China and Latin America, making "Chancay to Shanghai" a prosperous road that promotes common development between China and Peru. 

China actively supports Peru in hosting this year's informal leaders' meeting of APEC, maintaining the correct direction of Asia-Pacific cooperation, and sending a positive signal for building an open Asia-Pacific economy and promoting global economic growth. China attaches great importance to the development of China-Latin America relations, and is willing to work together with Peru and other Latin American and Caribbean countries to promote overall cooperation between China and Latin America and build a community of shared future between China and Latin America, said Xi. 

During her five-day visit in China, Boluarte tried out China's new energy vehicles in Shenzhen and gave a thumbs-up to the new technology of Chinese enterprises. She also took a ride on China's high-speed rail and praised it, saying, "Chinese high-speed train is really fast! We arrived [at our destination] so quickly." She extended an invitation to Chinese people, saying Peru has many world-renowned historical and cultural heritage sites and welcomes more Chinese tourists to visit.

Boluarte told Xi that during her visit to Shenzhen, Shanghai, Suzhou and other cities in the past few days, she personally experienced the rapid development and technological progress of China, and explored many areas for future cooperation. 

"We sincerely admire the great achievements made by China and hope to learn from China's successful experiences. Peru is willing to provide a good business environment for Chinese companies. We look forward to working together with China to complete the Chancay port project as scheduled, and bring more benefits to the people of both countries," said Boluarte.

Boluarte's visit not only strengthened the traditional economic and trade cooperation between China and Peru, but her visit to Huawei and BYD also signals there will be a new change in the trade structure between the two countries in the future, that is, the trend of digital economy and green economy will grow, Wang Youming, director of the Institute of Developing Countries at the China Institute of International Studies in Beijing, told the Global Times.

In an exclusive interview with the Global Times, Boluarte said China's cooperation with Peru can serve as a model for Latin America, demonstrating the advantages of maintaining good relations with China and the positive impact of this collaboration.

"The Belt and Road Initiative (BRI) offers opportunities to help close the existing infrastructure gap in our country. Peru is interested in exploring new forms of cooperation under the BRI and realizing win-win cooperation between the two countries," said Boluarte.

She used Chancay port as an example, saying once it is operational, the transportation time [from South America to China] will be reduced from 45 days to 23 days, and it is expected that at least 1 million containers will be handled by the port in the first year of operation.

Peruvian authorities hope the Chancay port will become a hub in the South American Pacific, but the project has upset players in the US seeking to stop a rise of Chinese influence in Latin America, Reuters reported.

General Laura Richardson, commander of US Southern Command, previously voiced unease over Chancay port, saying it sits on America's "20-yard line," following a US Council on Foreign Relations report identifying it as a China-backed maritime project that could be converted for military purposes.

Peru's President's visit this time not only demonstrated the country's strategic autonomy despite US pressure, it also sends a strong signal: Peru chooses to cooperate with China for development, rather than heeding the warning from the US, which is trying to force out Chinese companies from this Latin America country, said experts.

"We have a highly integrated economy with China. China is our top buyer, our top market, well above the US… The first reason was economic stability, the second is that we are already trying to integrate more [with China]. We know each other, we know how the Chinese market operates and you [China] also know how to operate in the Peruvian market," Peruvian Economy Minister Jose Arista said at a conference titled "Investment Opportunities in Peru" in Shanghai on Thursday.

Peru's strategy of striking a balance between China and the US will continue for a considerable amount of time, as it best serves the Latin American country's strategic interests, said Wang, noting that despite ongoing pressure from the US, Peru, as well as other South American countries, can recognize the cooperation potential, investment opportunities, and diplomatic appeal of China, and will continue to choose to collaborate with Beijing.