China and Latin America can be strong business allies and jointly explore the vast potentials of the markets, said a business expert in a live interview on Monday.

Remi Piet, Senior Director of Americas Market Intelligence, a market research firm for Latin America, shared his views on Chinese investment in Latin America under the framework of Belt & Road Initiative.

“There’s clear proof that there is a joint interest between China and Latin America.

Especially at a time when you have tensions on trade issues between the U.S. and China, Latin America is a very interesting partner for Beijing. On the other hand, the weakness of Latin America is its lack of infrastructure,” said Piet.

Among the countries in the region, Brazil and China have established strong cooperation ties in trade, infrastructure and agribusiness.

One of the ongoing projects jointly conducted by China and Brazil is the Port of Sao Luis, which will become an important deep-water port for bulk cargo in the northeastern part of Brazil.

“Right now we’re looking at infrastructure project in north of the country (Brazil) in the state of Maranhao and that is a strong supporter of more Chinese investment, especially for a project that is quantified as 425 million dollars of investment, 4,000 jobs that could be created through this port. So it’s a very interesting project for the state of Maranhao that has been known for its very low level of employment and the need for infrastructure and potential for agribusiness,” said Piet.

Piet said Latin America can be an important business partner of China under the backdrop of China-U.S. trade tensions.

“The vast majority of countries in Latin America actually have been fairly disappointed by the Trump Administration, the incapacity of the U.S. to actually really invest in Latin America.

And other key countries, especially Brazil, Peru, Colombia, Chile could actually be very strong allies of China and with strong potential for joint investment and development of infrastructure that are in dire need across the continent today,” he said.