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Interview: Mexico sees China as "a strategic partner": president


11:34, April 04, 2013

MEXICO CITY, April 3 (Xinhua) -- Mexico sees China as "a strategic partner," Mexican President Enrique Pena Nieto has said, pledging to upgrade the bilateral ties to achieve win-win cooperation.

In a written interview with Xinhua on the eve of his visit to China, Pena Nieto stressed that Mexico-China cooperation has great potential and poses remarkable opportunities in such sectors as trade and infrastructure.

"Mexico can be a gateway for China to enter North America, the world's richest market. It can so be a point of access to several countries in Central America and the Caribbean," said the president, who is scheduled to attend the 2013 Boao Forum for Asia in China on April 6-8.

"For Mexico, China represents an opportunity to increase its productive investment, and multiply and diversify its export capacity. China's economic dynamism, the size of its market and its high demand for goods, turn China into an attractive market for Mexico," he said.

He called on both countries to explore new ways to enhance cooperation and stressed that "as large economies, it is essential to promote constant dialogue."

He suggested both sides use the Mexico-China High Level Group established in 2004 and other bilateral mechanisms to promote high-level consultations and facilitate all-around cooperation.

Through dialogue, "we can deepen what we have in common, from our ancient cultures to our economic exchanges," he added.

"Expanding China's Confucius Institute in Mexico, by opening branches in more cities, would be the perfect way to raise greater awareness of Chinese culture among Mexicans and to promote the study of Mandarin," Pena Nieto said.

He added that "a greater presence of Mexican culture and the teaching of Spanish in China" will bring Mexico closer to the Chinese and make them enjoy "the opportunities that Mexico can offer them."

The Mexican president also said his country would like to learn from China's experience in energy and infrastructure development given the fact that China is home to the world's largest network of bullet trains.

"China is, without doubt, an excellent model on the issue," he said. "We have much to learn from its successful history in railway infrastructure."

Mexico's Communications and Transportation Ministry is currently working on a five-year (2013-2018) plan to build a series of railways.

Mexico is also keen to promote integration through such organizations as Latin America's Pacific Alliance which groups Peru, Chile, Colombia and Mexico, believing it can create opportunities not only for "its members, but also for other countries, such as China, that want to take advantage of Latin American growth," according to the Mexican head of state.

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