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LatinNews Regional Monitor: Andean Group - 9 April 2019

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In brief: Peru

* Peru’s economy minister Carlos Oliva has announced plans for the development of a commercial area that will pave the way for Chinese telecommunications company Huawei to open a factory in the country. Speaking on local radio station Radio Programas del Peru (RPP), Oliva discussed plans for the redevelopment of Chancay port in Lima region, which will see the investment of approximately US$3bn by Chinese consortium Cosco Shipping Ports and Peruvian mining company, Volcan, to build a shipping terminal that will “connect the whole of South America to Asia”. In the interview, Oliva stated “under consideration is some sort of special economic zone that would allow Huawei, for example, one of China’s largest companies, to be able to carry out the assembly of its phones and that sort of thing here in this country”.  The announcement comes days after the head of Peru’s foreign trade and tourism ministry (Mincetur) Edgar Vásquez revealed the culmination of the first set of negotiations on improving the existing Peru-China free trade agreement (FTA). According to state news agency Andina, the meetings took place between 1-4 April in Beijing. The agreement was initially signed in 2009 and since it was put in place, bilateral trade has increased by 9%, according to Andina.