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Lima, Beijing forge strong economic cooperation

Reporter: Dan Collyns 丨 CCTV.com

11-18-2016 20:37 BJT

Full coverage: Xi Visits Ecuador, Peru and Chile, Attends APEC Summit

The APEC host nation Peru already has strong trade ties with one of the bloc's biggest economies, China. While attending this year's APEC leaders' meeting, President Xi Jinping will also meet with his Peruvian counterpart to bolster bilateral cooperation and strengthen ties.

One of Latin America's fastest growing economies in the last decade, Peru has made big strides forward in pulling millions out of poverty.

But what experts call the "infrastructure gap" is still holding the country back.

Joining up this country of deserts, mountains and jungle is a pending task and Peru's president think China can help: That's why he made China his first state visit, he told CCTV.

"China has huge experience in infrastructure and we have some major infrastructure projects that we want to push forward," said Pedro Pablo Kuczynski, Peruvian President.

"One of them is what we call the 'tren de cercanias' the neighborhood train which goes from about 250 kilometers north of Lima to 300 kilometers south that would enable Peru to have a metropolitan plan for Lima which is a city today of 11 million people and soon it will be 20 million people and the Chinese have a lot of experience in that."

In October, Kuczynski's government was given special legislative powers to boost infrastructure projects worth 25 billion US dollars.

Those powers will it help it fast-track log-jammed projects such as expanding Lima's metro and airports in the capital and tourism hub Cusco.

That's where China can help.

"This new government of Kuczynski is trying to involve Chinese firms and government interests in infrastructure projects that are not necessarily linked to Chinese investments in other activities," said Fernando Gonzalez-Vigil, economist, Lima Pacific University. 

Peru is the region's principal hub for Chinese mining investment which make up a third of the country's overall portfolio.
China has invested in three multi-billion dollar copper mines in Peru, the world's third largest supplier of the red metal.

Investing in Peru's roads, ports and railways is also in China's interests as it imports millions of tons of minerals to power its own construction boom.

Both countries have had what's been called a strategic partnership since 2013.

Bilateral trade between the two countries has quadrupled in the last 15 years to more than 16 billion US dollars last year.

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