The Heat: China-Latin America relations

The Heat

Last month the Dominican Republic became the latest Latin American country to cut ties with Taiwan and establish diplomatic relations with Beijing.

It was back in January 2015 when Chinese President Xi Jinping set a five-year goal of $500 billion in trade and $250 billion in direct investment in Latin America. Last year trade reached $266 billion, with China becoming the biggest trading partner for such top economies as Brazil, Chile and Peru. And over the past decade, Latin American countries have increased exports to the Chinese market to nearly $100 billion a year. All this as China is encouraging countries in the region to join its ever-expanding Belt and Road Initiative.

To discuss China’s growing ties with Latin America:

  • Remi Piet is a senior director at Americas Market Intelligence.
  • He Li is  a political science professor at Merrimack College.
  • Jiang Shixue is the director of the Center for Latin American Studies at Shanghai University.
  • Jorge Heine is the former Chilean Ambassador to China. He’s currently a Global Fellow at the Wilson International Center for Scholars.

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