In the afternoon of April 26, 2023, the Grandview Institution hosted the first Ambassador Roundtable Talk (ART), inviting Mr. Fernando Lugris, Ambassador of the Oriental Republic of Uruguay to China, to discuss the cooperation between the “Belt and Road Initiative” and Latin American countries, the commercial and trade exchanges between China and Uruguay, and the review and expectations of China and Latin American countries in the field of judicial and law enforcement. The roundtable was moderated by Zhang Xiaoming, member of the Academic Committee of the Grandview Institution. Ren Libo, President of the Grandview Institution, welcomed the guests and delivered a speech. The Ambassador Roundtable Talk was attended by Song Junying, Director of the Institute of Latin American and Caribbean Studies, China Academy of International Studies; Yue Yunxia, Director of the Economic Department of the Latin American Institute, Chinese Academy of Social Sciences; Li Kang, Executive President of Chery University; and Cui Lisa, Director of Chery Automobile Beijing Representative Office. Zhang Jiayi, Media Supervisor, and Yang Xiaotong, Research Manager of the Public Affairs Department at the Grandview Institution also attended the meeting.
Ambassador Lugris emphasized that this year marks the 35th anniversary of the official establishment of diplomatic relations between Uruguay and China. The two countries established contacts as early as 135 years ago. Despite the geographical and historical differences between Uruguay and China, both countries attach importance to bilateral exchanges and cooperation.
In terms of economic trade, Ambassador Lugris said that China has gradually become a relevant player in Latin America. Uruguay officially signed up to China's “Belt and Road Initiative” in 2018. The ambassador also mentioned that Latin American countries need infrastructure development to facilitate economic and trade exchanges, and China's “Belt and Road Initiative” provides a good platform for this. In addition, the ambassador highlighted the importance of negotiating a free trade agreement between Uruguay and China, saying that the two countries have a common understanding on free trade and that the Uruguay side wants to make efforts to promote free trade between China and Uruguay. The ambassador said that it is not only necessary to promote global free trade, but also to strengthen regional free trade.
Zhang Xiaoming, a former member of the International Cooperation Bureau of the Ministry of Justice, reviewed the exchanges and cooperation between China and Latin American countries in the field of justice and law enforcement, and expected law professors, lawyers and legal scholars of the two countries to strengthen mutual exchanges and cooperation in this field. He also mentioned that exchanges and cooperation between the two countries need to uphold the five basic concepts of mutual communication, mutual trust, mutual respect, mutual assistance, and mutual benefit, which Ambassador Lugris agreed.