“We have come to amplify our political similarities as well as our areas of cooperation, reciprocal benefit, and shared profits”, said VP Li upon arriving at the Presidential Palace of Miraflores in the Venezuelan capital of Caracas.
Li was met by President Nicolas Maduro and his executive cabinet in order to advance projects that will “satisfy the essential needs of our people”, wrote Venezuela’s second-in-command, Vice President Jorge Arreaza via his Twitter account.
Four new accords were inked between the governments of Caracas and Beijing during the visit involving hydrocarbon, petrochemical, telecommunication and mineral development in Venezuela.
Importantly, the two allies agreed to a proposal for the construction of a new port in the central state of Carabobo near Venezuela’s Pequiven chemical plant that forms part of the nation’s publicly owned oil company Pdvsa.
A contract outlining the financing of the project by the Import and Export Bank of China was signed by the two leaders in order to define the terms of the port’s construction.
“Our industry will have a new maritime port to provide services to the ammonium and urea [Pequiven] plant. As such, we will continue to project growth in our petrochemical [sector]”, the Venezuelan President said.
Further agreements were penned that will tighten Venezuela-China collaboration in telecommunications and technology, including the manufacture of cellular phones and circuitry for computers.
“This visit has been very fruitful. We will never forget the loving support that China gave to our Comandante [Chavez]. We will be loyal to the work that has been done”, Maduro said after the dialogue. Chinese-Venezuelan relations have been growing steadily since 1999, when then President Hugo Chavez began to implement a new foreign policy for the South American country that sought to expand trade partners internationally and move away from dependency on the United States. This policy shift is slated to continue under the Maduro government, following the former Foreign Minister of the Chavez administration’s victory in Venezuela’s April 14th elections.
According to the recently elected president, his country’s relationship with China is “a strategic alliance for shared development which began at zero and now passes $10 billion in commercial trade”. Apart from trade, Maduro also informed that intellectual exchanges form an essential part of the alliance.
As such, a group of 50 Venezuelans will be sent to China to study economic initiatives in key areas “to encourage development of [our] productive forces”. Members of the United Socialist Party of Venezuela will also travel to the Asian nation to receive social and political training from members of the Chinese Communist Party.
The move is meant to promote dialogue and fortify the push for a new breed of socialism in the OPEC member nation following the example set by Maduro’s predecessor, Hugo Chavez.
“We are convinced that Socialism of the 21st Century is the path to social, economic, educational, cultural, human and holistic prosperity in Venezuela”, Maduro declared.