China and Cuba sign agreements for economic cooperation
During the 14th session of the Bilateral Business Committee, China and Cuba signed two agreements to promote economic cooperation. The joint action plan saw Vice President of the China Council for the Promotion of International Trade (CCPIT), Chen Zhou signing the agreement, which includes strategies and actions of developments taking place this year to consolidate links between China and Cuba’s business communities. The Belt and Road is an initiative that brings important international economic actors and developing countries together under “win-win” cooperation. Renowned Cuban Economist Hernandez stated. He also said that the joint projects in Latin America are in line with the initiative's goals such as infrastructure development, logistics, increased trade, cultural exchanges, people-to-people relations and the expansion of innovation and technology.
Along with this agreement, head of the Cuban export and investment promotion agency ProCuba, Chen Zhou and Robert Verrier signed a memorandum of understanding (MOU), in hopes of strengthening ties between China and Cuba. Chen describes that the 2019 joint action plan is not only a guide for bilateral cooperation but also an organization of mutual visits, exchange of economic information, legal advice and the promotion of opportunities for Chinese provinces and Cities. Orlando Hernandez, president of Cuba’s Chamber of Commerce, acknowledges the importance of the economic links between Beijing and Havana. Hernandez also states that Chinese products are very much present in Cuban Life such as health, education, technology, sports, and transport. Thus promoting joint ventures in Cuba’s Mariel Spacial Development Zone, as Chinese companies open new opportunities for Chinese companies within the Cuban market.
Hernandez, has been researching China’s economy and reform for over twenty years, states that new developments and agreements that come out of the Belt and Road Forum will be regarded as highly significant because it will be showcasing a shared future for humanity. Hernandez also believes that the Belt and Road Initiative has a strategic component, in the sense of its development of infrastructures and states that connectivity is critical within the BRI’S initiative.
While highlighting the importance of the BRI for Cuba and Latin America about its development prospects president of Cuba’s Chamber of Commerce, Hernandez has called on Chinese investments to expand their presence. With Cuba and China identifying the three areas in which they will be enhancing bilateral ties, Director General Alberto Blanco of Asia and Oceania at the Ministry of Foreign Affairs also states that Cuba proposes joint efforts that focus on renewable energy, cybersecurity, technology, and biotechnology. Blanco also said, “We have consolidated the joint working group between both countries, held work commissions, and established joint ventures and companies that are not only producing but also expanding their production capacities.” By having Latina American countries participating in the BRI, therefore, demonstrates the BRI’s popularity worldwide, showcasing the China-Cuba cooperation with the framework of the Belt and Road Initiative.