Latin America: 'China's Backyard' - The Gatestone Institute - 22.11.22

China in Latin America – by Judith Bergman - Part 2.


In the next two years, between 2022 and 2024, China, according to its joint plan with Latin American and Caribbean states, and as part of its quest to become the world's global tech leader, envisages providing states in the region with 5,000 government scholarships and 3,000 training places in education and research in the Chinese homeland.


This cooperation also extends to space, as well as nuclear energy and nuclear technology. The plan also aims to strengthen cooperation in 5G telecommunications equipment and artificial intelligence.


Significantly, the action plan also mentions building networks of sister cities and sister provinces between Latin American/Caribbean countries and China.


"Under the administration of Communist Party leader Xi Jinping, the association [for sister-cities] has been revitalized as China seeks to groom local business, political, and media leaders in countries around the world..." — "China's Influence & American Interests," a 2018 report by the Working Group on Chinese Influence Activities in the United States, Hoover Institution Press, November 29, 2018.


China's trade with Latin America reached $450 billion last year, up from $180 billion in 2010. The World Economic Forum has estimated that trade with the region will exceed $700 billion by 2035, more than double what it was in 2000.


Crucially, 21 out of the 33 countries in Latin America and the Caribbean have joined the Belt and Road Initiative. The BRI seeks dramatically to enhance China's global influence... by making countries worldwide increasingly dependent on China.

Latin America, as one headline noted recently, is fast "becoming China's backyard."


China already wields considerable influence in Latin America, but a joint new action plan promises to take that influence to new levels; it shows the extent to which China is aiming to "take over" Latin America and the Caribbean.


China is deepening its involvement in Latin America and the Caribbean, as Chinese Vice Minister of Foreign Affairs Ma Zhaoxu made clear last year at a summit between China and Latin American and Caribbean states.


The summit resulted in a joint action plan that will not only tighten economic cooperation between China and Latin America and the Caribbean in various fields such as agriculture, food, science, technology, industry, infrastructure, aviation, energy and tourism, but also deepen China's influence in the region through cooperation in education, research and sports.


The action plan directly mentions, for instance, that Latin American and Caribbean members of the forum "support China in hosting the Beijing 2022 Olympic and Paralympic Winter Games" that took place in March.


In the next two years, between 2022 and 2024, China, according to its joint plan with Latin American and Caribbean states, and as part of its quest to become the world's global tech leader, envisages providing states in the region with 5,000 government scholarships and 3,000 training places in education and research in the Chinese homeland.


This cooperation also extends to space, as well as nuclear energy and nuclear technology. The plan also aims to strengthen cooperation in 5G telecommunications equipment and artificial intelligence.


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Judith Bergman, a columnist, lawyer and political analyst, is a Distinguished Senior Fellow at Gatestone Institute.

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Pictured: Chinese President Xi Jinping hosts Venezuelan President Nicolas Maduro in Beijing, China on September 1, 2015. (Photo by Parker Song-Pool/Getty Images)



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