Expectations soaring among Argentines for closer China ties


Street views in  Buenos Aires, Argentina.(Photo: Xinhua)

BUENOS AIRES, Nov. 29 (Xinhua) -- Chinese President Xi Jinping's upcoming state visit here has evoked high expectations among the Argentine public for deeper friendship and increased win-win cooperation between the two countries.

In a signed article titled "Opening up a New Era in China-Argentina Relations" and published Wednesday in Argentine daily Clarin, Xi said the bilateral friendship has overcome geographical distance and grown even closer.

"Our bilateral relations have stood the test of changing international circumstances and set an example of solidarity and cooperation for common development between the two emerging economies and developing countries," he said.

That struck a chord with many Argentines, including Gonzalo Tordini, an expert in international economic cooperation who once studied at University of International Business and Economics in China.

The friendship between the two peoples, said Tordini, is the biggest success of China-Argentina relations, which allows the two nations to work in the right direction and get to know each other more and understand each other better.

Xi's visit will reinforce the Argentina-China relationship, he added, expressing his hope for the South American country to step up long-term cooperation with China.

He suggested that Argentina officially become part of the Belt and Road Initiative for global development. "It will be an opportunity to improve our connectivity, in a wider sense," he said.

"Improving infrastructure, people-to-people exchange, increasing trade and cultural knowledge are necessary to continue to deepen our ties with China," said Tordini, who is also president and co-founder of the Argentina-China Association of Former Scholarship Recipients.

In the eyes of law clerk and University of Belgrano student Maria Perez Salvadores, Xi's article underscores that China-Argentina interaction still has great potential to tap and the two countries "are working on it."

"At the cultural level, we see it in courses and classes for learning the Chinese language, or in the increasingly popular Chinese celebrations in Argentina, like the Spring Festival," she added.

Martin Kerchner, minister of economy, energy and infrastructure in Argentina's Mendoza province, pointed to Xi's message of economic cooperation. "We have a lot to do and to grow together with China," said Kerchner.

"China firmly supports Argentina in exploring a development path suited to its national conditions and has every confidence about its future," Xi said in the article.

Journalist Leandro Boye said that Xi's words reflect his vision of a shared future and joint development, which will benefit both sides.

During his stay in Argentina, the second leg of his ongoing Europe and Latin America tour, Xi will also attend the 13th Group of 20 (G20) summit in Buenos Aires.

"China's fundamental contribution to international cooperation is something the world certainly needs," said Patricio Giusto, head of the China-Argentina Observatory and professor at the Catholic University of Argentina.

"As long as China remains strong on the international stage and bets on multilateralism, we can expect forums like the G20 to continue to strengthen," added the public policy expert.

Gustavo Ng, editor of Chinese-Argentine cultural exchange magazine Dang Dai and member of China Culture Translation and Studies Support, highlighted China's development success and what it means for the world.

"It's not about the world following China's example. It's that China, with its social and economic success, is showing that things can be done in another way, and they can work out well," he said.