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Partnership with China a golden opportunity

By Xu Weiwei in Macao | China Daily | Updated: 2024-06-22 08:37
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China's experience in developing green, sustainable and digital infrastructure projects can provide valuable inspiration for Latin American and Caribbean, or LAC, countries, said speakers at the 10th China-LAC Infrastructure Forum.

Against the backdrop of the green transition, LAC countries have witnessed a big increase in their sustainable and digital infrastructure needs, they said.

China's technological advantages and experiences in aspects such as new energy, 5G and artificial intelligence can help meet LAC countries' infrastructure development demands, and enhance both the quantity and quality of their energy and digital infrastructures.

As part of the 15th International Infrastructure Investment and Construction Forum in Macao from Wednesday to Friday, the LAC event focused on low-carbon and intelligent infrastructure transformation between China and LAC countries.

Collin D Croal, Guyana's minister of housing and water, said China plays a significant role in Guyana's infrastructural development through active involvement in construction projects, financial support, and bilateral agreements under programs like the Belt and Road Initiative.

William F Duguid, a senior minister in the prime minister's office of Barbados, said: "At this historical 10th-anniversary forum, it is important to focus on the future we can build together."

Beijing's approach emphasizes the importance of long-term planning and sustained commitment, he said, adding that inclusive development is at the heart of its efforts for economic growth.

Iris Mariel Budde Garcia, Honduras' secretary-general of the Ministry of Infrastructure and Transport, said infrastructure and power generation facilities are crucial to the economic and social development of Honduras, and China enjoys rich construction experience in this area. She said her country hopes to have close cooperation with China.

Clement Antonio, parliamentary secretary at Antigua and Barbuda's Ministry of Housing, Public Works, Lands and Urban Renewal, said one of the country's most pressing challenges today is climate change, as rising sea levels and increasingly severe storms threaten their very existence."China's advanced technology and financial support offer a beacon of hope," he said.

He said Caribbean countries consider China as more than a partner. Chinese investments have fueled the modernization of ports, highways and energy infrastructure, crucially supporting their tourismdependent economies.

China's Vice-Minister of Commerce Guo Tingting said Chinese companies have signed engineering contracts worth more than $280 billion in Latin America so far and their completed turnover has exceeded $180 billion.

Colombia's Minister of Transportation William Camargo Triana said Chinese investment in Colombian infrastructure is worth $5.7 billion in total, including $925 million in 2023.


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