China - Latin America Links - Week ending October 16

Updated: Dec 9, 2020

Argentina

Argentina opens third Confucius Institute at its oldest university - Global Times

Note - The Global Times is a state-run media outlet of the Chinese Communist Party


Argentina's third Confucius Institute officially opened its doors at the National University of Cordoba (UNC) on Friday, offering introductory to advanced courses on Chinese language and culture at the country's oldest institute of higher education.


The Confucius Institute opened following a four-year joint effort by UNC leaders, China's University of Jinan and the Chinese Embassy in Argentina, expanding a network that includes institutes at the University of Buenos Aires and at the National University of La Plata.


...In 2021, the university's publishing house will launch a collection of China-themed publications.


Future plans also include a course to teach the Chinese language to young girls and boys through "children's rhymes, calligraphy, paper-cutting techniques and the spelling of one's own name," said Perez.


Brazil

COFCO Soy Pledge: Questions persist over track and trace plan - Diálogo Chino


China claims it found residues of Covid-19 in Brazilian beef packaging — MercoPress

Two months after China said it found residues of Covid-19 in a batch of chicken wings imported from Brazil, Beijing authorities repeated the announcement, but this time in relation to Brazilian beef. Apparently, traces of Covid-19 were detected in beef packaging during an inspection carried out at the Port of Dalian, one of the largest in the country.


The meat was produced by the Barretos (SP) unit of the Minerva meatpacker. Barretos is the city where the company was founded 96 years ago. Minerva is the third-largest beef producer in Brazil, behind JBS and Marfrig.


...From January to July, Brazil exported 1.1 million tons of beef. This means a turnover of US$ 4.7 billion. Of this total, 60% of the revenue comes directly from China.


Bolsonaro Weighs Huawei Ban From 5G Network, Cabinet Member Says - Bloomberg

President Jair Bolsonaro is considering banning Huawei Technologies Co. from supplying components to Brazil’s upcoming 5G network because he sees China as a global threat to data privacy and sovereignty, according to a senior member of his cabinet.


...Still, the cabinet member dismissed the possibility of Chinese retaliation, saying Beijing relies on Brazilian agricultural imports to feed its population. The perception in Brazil is that other countries which have banned Huawei have not suffered major consequences, the person added, requesting anonymity to discuss internal matters.


...Brazil plans to select those companies around next May after the health crisis delayed the process initially scheduled for this year, Communications Minister Fabio Faria said in a recent interview.


My thoughts: What cabinet member leaked this? Their cabinet seems divided on the Bolsanaro government's approach to China, and this leak should be viewed through a lens of intra-cabinet politics.


Chile

Japan undersea cable deal with Chile shows engagement in Latin America - Business Insider

But this summer, Chile finalized a deal that indicates a significant convergence of geostrategic interests between Japan and the Americas. After much deliberation, Chile chose an undersea route, backed by Japan, for the first direct fiber-optic cable link between South America and the Asia-Pacific.


...In choosing the Japan-backed route, Chile rejected a competing offer from Chinese telecommunications giant Huawei, which designated Shanghai as the terminus.


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