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Video: China and Latin America — How will the COVID-19 crisis impact the relationship?

Wednesday, April 8, 2020


  • Tatiana Rosito, Senior Fellow, the Brazilian Center for International Relations
  • Margaret Myers, Director of the Asia and Latin America Program, Inter-American Dialogue
  • Eric Farnsworth, Vice President, Americas Society/Council of the Americas 
  • Cecilia Tornaghi, Managing Editor, Americas Quarterly (moderator)

Can China be a silver bullet for the COVID-19 economic crisis about to hit Latin America? As an AS/COA virtual conversation on April 8 started with this question, experts listed the many ways China's support to the region might differ from during the 2008 financial crisis. One is that it is still early to know which policies China will adopt for its own economic recovery, said Margaret Myers. She explained that what multinational organizations such as the IDB and the IMF offer and how bad the situation gets in Latin America might also be factors. "I don't think it's really China's intent to be the rescuer of Latin America," said Eric Farnsworth. Tatiana Rosito underscored the need for the region to be proactive and have a plan that includes a diversity of partners in its recovery, while avoiding the trap of having to choose between China and the United States. She pointed to FDI opportunities in the region while Myers cited China's significant shortages in grain supply, which could have positive implications for LatinAmerican producers.