The Arenal Area Magazine

Bright Future For China-Costa Rica Ties: Ambassador

The establishment of diplomatic ties between China and Costa Rica in 2007 and the rapid growth of bilateral ties since then are in the interests of the two countries and peoples, said China’s ambassador to the central American nation.

China has confidence in the prospects of the two-way ties and attaches importance to the bilateral friendly cooperation, Ambassador Li Changhua told China’s Xinhua News Agency in a recent interview ahead of Chinese Foreign Minister Yang Jiechi’s visit to Costa Rica on August 1.

Stressing it is the first visit by a Chinese foreign minister to the central American nation since the two countries forged diplomatic ties, Li said the Chinese government is willing to make joint efforts with Costa Rica to facilitate win-win cooperation and foster a bright future for the bilateral relationship.

The ambassador said China-Costa Rica relations have been developing in a rapid and comprehensive way in the past three years. Bilateral dialogues and consultations have been conducted on an equal basis as the two sides are enhancing political trust and broadening consensus.

There have been frequent high-level exchanges including visits by heads of state from the two countries and exchanges between the two parliaments and political parties in both countries, he said.

China and Costa Rica have been coordinating closely on crucial global and regional affairs such as UN reform and climate change, Li said.

There is a great potential for bilateral economic cooperation as China has become Costa Rica’s second biggest trading partner, he said.

In the first half of 2010, bilateral trade grew 58 percent year-on-year while Costa Rica’s exports to China increased 68.7 percent over the period.

The two nations signed a free trade pact in April, providing a positive and secure mechanism for expanding bilateral trade and investment so as to enhance the win-win cooperation, Li said.

Besides, people-to-people exchanges between the two nations have been on a rise during recent years, he added.

Li said the China now offers 50 scholarships every year for Costa Rican students and provides dozens of short-term training courses in technology, journalism, administrative management, among others.

China’s Confucius Institute has opened a branch at the University of Costa Rica, which has become a platform for communication in culture and education between the two countries.

Bilateral cooperation in technology such as in biodiversity and hybrid rice have also proceeded smoothly, said the ambassador.

He said China-Costa Rica cooperation has great potential because the two economies complement each other.

Li suggested the two countries further cooperation in new energy, environmental protection and biotechnology, promote trade and investment, and create favorable conditions for cooperation between enterprises.

China and Costa Rica also need to broaden communication and cooperation in education, science and technology, culture and tourism, so they could jointly contribute to the construction of a harmonious world, he added.


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