On January 1st, the progressive forces in Latin America, standing for independence against imperialism, national development and social progress, took a big step forward with the return as President of Brazil of Luiz Inácio Lula da Silva.
A co-founder of the BRICS, which presently groups Brazil, Russia, India, China and South Africa, and veteran leader of Brazil’s Workers’ Party (PT), Lula addressed his country’s Congress as “a representative of the working class”, who “promotes economic growth in a sustainable way and to the benefit of all, especially those most in need.” The full text of Lula’s emotional and inspiring inauguration speech and his address to Congress can be read here.
In his message of greetings to his Brazilian counterpart, Chinese President Xi Jinping said that he attaches great importance to the development of the China-Brazil comprehensive strategic partnership, and is willing to work with Lula to continue to firmly support each other in taking a development path in line with their own national conditions, respect each other’s core interests, promote their practical cooperation, strengthen multilateral coordination, and lead and push the partnership to a higher level from a strategic and long-term perspective, so as to better benefit the two countries and their people.
China’s Vice President Wang Qishan attended the inauguration in the capital Brasilia as the Special Representative of President Xi. Wang joined a large number of other world leaders, including what amounted to a roll call of progressive Latin America, namely:
- President Gustavo Petro of Colombia
- President Xiomara Castro of Honduras
- President Luis Arce of Bolivia and former President Evo Morales
- President Alberto Fernandez of Argentina
- President Gabriel Boric of Chile
- President Irfaan Ali of Guyana
- Former President Pepe Mujica of Uruguay (as part of a bipartisan national delegation that also included the current and another former President)
- Prime Minister Ralph Gonsalves of Saint Vincent and the Grenadines
- Cuban Vice-President Salvador Valdés Mesa
- Nicaraguan Foreign Minister Denis Moncada
- Mexican First Lady Beatriz Gutiérrez Müller
- President of the Venezuelan National Assembly Jorge Rodriguez (according to the Orinoco Tribune, President Nicolás Maduro had been due to attend but was prevented by a last-minute security issue.)
They were also joined by a range of political leaders from other countries, including Russia, Serbia, Azerbaijan, Palestine, Iran, Algeria, Angola, Mozambique, Guinea Bissau, Cape Verde, Zimbabwe, South Africa, Equatorial Guinea, Guinea, Mali, Timor Leste, Spain, Portugal, Germany Ecuador and Peru.
In their meeting, Wang Qishan said that President Lula is an old friend of the Chinese people, who has long been caring for and supporting the development of China-Brazil relations. Noting that both countries had recently completed major domestic political agendas, with the Communist Party of China holding its 20th National Congress and Brazil electing a new government, Wang said he believes that on their respective new journey, both countries and their people, and both the CPC and the Brazilian Workers’ Party (PT), will continue to strengthen solidarity and coordination, and jointly create an even better future for China-Brazil relations. He also said that the two countries can together play an important role in strengthening the overall cooperation between China and Latin America, for example with the holding of the Forum of China and the Community of Latin American States (CELAC) and in deepening relations with other regional organisations, such as the Southern Common Market (Mercosur) and the Union of South American Nations (UNASUR).
For his part, Lula said that his PT is willing to strengthen inter-party exchanges with the CPC, adding that he looks forward to leading a delegation to China to further deepen bilateral practical cooperation in various fields, enhance friendship between the people of the two countries, and lift Brazil-China relations to a new level.
The following reports were originally carried by the Xinhua News Agency.
Xi congratulates Lula on inauguration as Brazilian president
Xinhua, 3 January 2023
Chinese President Xi Jinping on Monday sent a congratulatory message to Luiz Inacio Lula da Silva on his inauguration as president of the Federative Republic of Brazil.
In his message, Xi pointed out that China and Brazil are major developing countries with global influence and important emerging markets.
The two countries are comprehensive strategic partners sharing extensive common interests and shouldering common development responsibilities, Xi added.
Since the establishment of diplomatic ties 48 years ago, bilateral relations have witnessed sustained and in-depth development thanks to joint efforts of both sides, and have grown increasingly mature and dynamic, Xi said, adding that the China-Brazil relationship has become a model of relations between major developing countries with rich connotations and broad prospects.
Xi also said he attaches great importance to the development of the China-Brazil comprehensive strategic partnership, and is willing to work with Lula to continue to firmly support each other in taking a development path in line with their own national conditions, respect each other’s core interests, promote their practical cooperation, strengthen multilateral coordination, and lead and push the partnership to a higher level from a strategic and long-term perspective, so as to better benefit the two countries and their people.
Chinese VP attends inauguration ceremony of new Brazilian president
Xinhua, 3 January 2023
At the invitation of the Brazilian government, Chinese President Xi Jinping’s Special Representative Vice President Wang Qishan has attended the inauguration ceremony of Brazil’s new President Luiz Inacio Lula da Silva and met with him in Brasilia, capital of Brazil.
During his stay in Brazil from Saturday to Monday, Wang also met with Vice President-elect Geraldo Alckmin and incumbent Vice President Hamilton Mourao respectively.
While meeting with Lula, Wang handed over a letter signed by Xi and conveyed Xi’s warm congratulations and best wishes to Lula as well as his invitation for Lula to visit China.
President Lula is an old friend of the Chinese people, who has long been caring for and supporting the development of China-Brazil relations, Wang said.
Noting that both China and Brazil have recently completed major domestic political agendas, he said the 20th National Congress of the Communist Party of China (CPC) was successfully held, electing a new central leadership with Comrade Xi Jinping at the core, and mapping out strategic plans for the development of various undertakings for the Party and the country in the coming period, adding that Brazil has also elected a new government.
Wang said he believes that on their respective new journey, both countries and their people, and both the CPC and the Brazilian Workers’ Party (PT), will continue to strengthen solidarity and coordination, and jointly create an even better future for China-Brazil relations.
Wang put forward a four-point proposal on the future development of China-Brazil relations. First, he called for strengthening top-level design of both sides and actively promoting bilateral exchanges in diplomatic, parliamentary, judicial, military, local and other areas.
The second, Wang said, is to consolidate and expand practical cooperation in economy and trade, and in particular to actively explore cooperation in such emerging industries as science and technology innovation, digital economy and green economy.
Third, Wang suggested the two sides deepen multilateral strategic coordination, jointly defend true multilateralism, and strengthen coordination on climate change and other issues.
The fourth is to strengthen overall cooperation between China and Latin America, he said, stressing China is ready to enhance communication with the Brazilian side on the issues of holding the Forum of China and the Community of Latin American and Caribbean States and deepening relations with regional organizations such as the Southern Common Market and the Union of South American Nations.
For his part, Lula asked Wang to convey his heartfelt thanks and cordial greetings to Xi, and extended warm welcome to Wang for attending his inauguration ceremony.
Brazil attaches great importance to its relations with China, and hopes to strengthen strategic and long-term cooperation with the country, Lula said, adding that the PT, to which he belongs, is also willing to strengthen inter-party exchanges with the CPC.
Brazil and China, as two countries with important influence, should play active roles in promoting the common progress of developing countries, he said, adding that he looks forward to leading a delegation to China to further deepen bilateral practical cooperation in various fields, enhance friendship between the people of the two countries, and lift Brazil-China relations to a new level.
When meeting with Alckmin, Wang congratulated him on his election, and said that China and Brazil are the largest developing countries in the Eastern and Western Hemisphere, respectively.
For a long time, practical cooperation has always worked as a “stabilizer” and “propeller” in the relationship between the two countries, Wang added.
The China-Brazil High-level Coordination and Cooperation Committee (COSBAN), the highest-level dialogue and cooperation mechanism between the two governments, has played an irreplaceable role in deepening bilateral relations, and planning and guiding cooperation in various fields between the two countries, Wang said.
Wang said he expects that Alckmin will lead the Brazilian team of COSBAN to strengthen alignment with China, so as to inject new impetus into the in-depth development of bilateral relations in the new era.
Noting that the friendship between Brazil and China is timeless, Alckmin said the two sides enjoy extensive fields of cooperation, strong complementarity in economy and trade, and broad prospects for development.
The Brazilian side is willing to continue to make good use of the COSBAN mechanism, further strengthen communication with the Chinese side, seize opportunities and tap potentials so as to upgrade their level of cooperation, Alckmin added.
When meeting with Mourao, Wang said the Chinese people value friendship and will never forget their old friends.
China highly appreciates Mourao’s important contributions to promoting the sustained and healthy development of bilateral relations, Wang said, hoping that Mourao can care for and promote the development of China-Brazil relations as always.
Noting that China-Brazil relations have made remarkable progress in recent years, Mourao said that he believes bilateral relations will be a priority for Brazil’s new government, and that he is willing to continue to make contributions to the Brazil-China friendly cooperation.