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Peru PM says boost in China's investments will not prompt US 'resentment'

Published 06/17/2024, 04:24 PM
Updated 06/17/2024, 04:35 PM
© Reuters.

By Marco Aquino

LIMA (Reuters) - Peru's government does not expect an upcoming trip by President Dina Boluarte to China or the increase in investments by Chinese firms in the Andean nation to cause "resentment" from the U.S., Peru's prime minister said on Monday.

Boluarte will visit Beijing at the end of this month, with meetings scheduled with counterpart Xi Jinping and representatives of Chinese giants such as Huawei and BYD (SZ:002594) at a time when Chinese investments have multiplied in recent years, to the concern of Western nations. 

"We do not believe that our friends... like the United States will feel resentful because we're bringing Chinese investments (to Peru)," Prime Minister Gustavo Adrianzen said at a press conference.

"We believe this is an invitation for Western capital to arrive, including from the United States," he added.

Boluarte is set to meet with Xi on June 28, but will first sit down with executives from Cosco Shipping Ports, which is heading construction the vast Chancay "megaport" set to be a hub between Asia and South America.

Xi will attend the port's inauguration in November, when the Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation Forum (APEC) leaders summit will also be held in Peru.

The $3.5 billion Chancay port has garnered interest from Brazil to ship exports to Asia, but has also become a poster child for the challenge for the U.S. and Europe to combat the rise of Chinese investments in Latin America.

MORE CHINESE INVESTMENT 

Boluarte's agenda also includes meetings with Jinzhao Mining and infrastructure group China Railway Construction Corp.

Adrianzen said on Monday that the decade-old proposal to build a train line from Peru, through Bolivia and to Brazil should be put back on the table to boost exports out of Chancay.

Through the port, Brazil would be able to significantly cut shipping times on key exports such as soybeans and meat which currently travel through the Panama Canal, analysts say.

The "Bi-Oceanic Railway" may not become reality in the short term, the prime minister said, but could come "as the megaport is developed" in the medium-to-long-term.

Bolivia and Paraguay are also interested in shipping exports out through Peru, Adrianzen said.

© Reuters. FILE PHOTO: Peru's Prime Minister Gustavo Adrianzen walks outside the Government Palace after prosecutors raided home of President Dina Boluarte as part of inquiries into possible illicit enrichment and failure to declare ownership of luxury watches, in Lima, Peru March 30, 2024. REUTERS/Sebastian Castaneda/File Photo

Paraguayan President Santiago Pena "asked Boluarte that (Paraguayan) exports to Asia leave from the port of Chancay" when the two spoke in September, the prime minister said.

China is Peru's largest trading partner, and more than a third of Peru's $65 billion in exports last year went to China.

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