10th Anniversary of China-CELAC Forum held in Beijing

Photo: Symposium on Development Cooperation and Knowledge Exchange between China and Latin America.

On Monday, January 29, the Symposium on Development Cooperation and Knowledge Exchange between China and Latin America was held in Beijing, an event to mark the 10th anniversary of the China-CELAC Forum, a space for strengthening relations between China and the countries of the Caribbean and Latin America.

The event served as a platform to assess the development of China-Latin America relations since the Forum’s establishment in 2014, as well as to discuss South-South cooperation in governance, development issues, cultural exchanges, poverty alleviation, trade, investment, infrastructure, and health education.

In 2023, trade between China and Latin America exceeded US$489 billion, and China signed cooperation agreements on the joint construction of the Belt and Road Initiative with Honduras, Argentina, Chile, and Uruguay, as well as free trade agreements with Ecuador and Nicaragua.

The event, co-hosted by the Academy of Contemporary China and World Studies of the China International Communications Group (CICG), the Latin American Faculty of Social Sciences (FLACSO), the Latin American Council of Social Sciences (CLACSO), Chaohua Publishing Co, the Americas Communication Center of the China International Communications Group (CICG) and the China-Latin America Cultural Exchange Center in Beijing, was attended by more than 100 representatives from diplomatic missions, universities, think tanks, enterprises and various media, who exchanged views on the opportunities and challenges of China-LAC relations.

This symposium highlights the importance of further strengthening the China-CELAC Forum and promoting new high-level agreements on strategic engagement, cooperation in science and technology, innovation, trade, and emerging global challenges.

The Forum is also a place to discuss cooperation strategies beyond the Belt and Road Initiative, especially considering that the region should be very conscious of social responsibility and environmental sustainability as a priority in these negotiations.

It is also important not to lose sight of China’s current economic situation, with its rising national debt, the recent liquidation of the real estate giant Evergrande, which reflects the national real estate bubble, high unemployment (especially youth unemployment), and the decline in GDP growth last year.