MACAU [ ABN NEWS + MACAUHUB ] — The cumulative value of trade between China and the Portuguese-speaking countries exceeded US$360 billion between 2013 and 2015, China’s Deputy Minister of Commerce recalled on Wednesday at a meeting of businesspeople.
Gao Yan also pointed out that China is currently the largest trading partner in Asia for several Portuguese-speaking countries, such as Portugal, Angola, Cabo Verde (Cape Verde) and Brazil, the latter being China’s largest trading partner globally for seven consecutive years.
Speaking at the Conference of Financial Area Businesspeople and Officials between China and Portuguese-Speaking Countries, Ms. Gao stressed China’s companies have so far invested US$50 billion in the Portuguese-speaking countries, becoming one of the major foreign direct investors in those countries, such as Portugal and Mozambique.
In order to further deepen trade and economic relations between China and the Portuguese-speaking countries, the deputy minister of Commerce presented a three-point proposal.
One of these points concerns cooperation in terms of the productive capacity of the Portuguese-speaking countries, which she said was “the most important means to complement the mutual benefits between China and those countries, and the execution triangular operations in other markets.”
The third point refers specifically to Macau, with the deputy minister saying that Macau’s role as a trade services and business platform between China and the Portuguese-speaking countries “is increasingly obvious.”
The Conference of Financial Area Businesspeople and Officials – co-organised by the Ministry of Trade, the Council for the Promotion of International Trade of China, IPIM and the Macau Monetary Authority – will be held under the theme “Innovation of the financial services model – promotion of industrial capacity cooperation between China and Portuguese-speaking countries.”
On Tuesday, China’s Prime Minister said companies from Portuguese-speaking countries had set up over 1,000 subsidiaries in China, while the investment of Chinese enterprises in these countries is approaching US$50 billion.
When opening the 5th Ministerial Conference of the Forum for Economic and Trade Cooperation between China and Portuguese-speaking Countries, Li Keqiang said that the projects awarded to Chinese companies in Portuguese-speaking countries already totalled US$90 billion.
The Prime Minister stressed that Chinese imports are expected to reach US$8 billion over the next five years, Chinese foreign direct investment will total US$50 billion and more than 600 million Chinese citizens will travel abroad.
“All these figures represent great business opportunities for companies from all corners of the planet, including the Portuguese-speaking countries,” said Li.
The prime minister also assured the participants at the Ministerial Conference that China intends to use all the financing platforms such as the New Maritime Silk Road and the Forum for Economic and Trade Cooperation between China and Portuguese-speaking countries, to develop a large number of projects as soon as possible.
Li Keqiang, who travelled to Macau to attend the 5th Ministerial Conference, left the territory on Wednesday.