II High-Level CELAC-China Academic Forum and the VI China-LAC Think Tanks Forum
On October 11, 2021, the II High-Level CELAC-China Academic Forum and the VI China-LAC Think Tanks Forum were held. These complementary events were organized by the United Nations Economic Commission for Latin America and the Caribbean (ECLAC), the Union of Latin American and Caribbean Universities (UDUAL), the Institute of Latin American Studies at the Chinese Academy of Social Sciences (ILAS–CASS), the Bureau of International Cooperation at CASS, the China People’s Institute of Foreign Affairs, the China Institute of International Studies, and the China Foundation for International Studies.
Dr. Santa Gadea participated in the second session on the first day of the Forum, entitled “Cooperation between China and Latin America under the Belt and Road Initiative and the Health Silk Road in the face of Global Challenges,” focusing on the subject of expectations and progress in BRI cooperation between China and Latin America.
She explained that there are 19 countries in the region that are part of the BRI, which has evolved from being an initiative focused on Asia and Europe with a few economic corridors to one that has expanded towards Africa and Latin America, embracing at least 35 economic corridors as well as other projects. The extension of the Belt and Road to Latin America is, in reality, the extension to the Pacific of the 21st Century Maritime Silk Road. In short, the extension of the BRI to Latin America should mean working on the establishment of one (or more) trans-Pacific economic corridors. Chancay port has the potential to contribute to just such a corridor. The challenge of diversifying exports to China to include manufactured products is ongoing, given that the export of these goods from Latin America and the Caribbean remains minimal.