LatinNews Daily - 27 March 2023

In brief: Honduras formally establishes ties with Beijing

*Honduras’s government led by President Xiomara Castro has formally established ties with China and severed relations with Taiwan. This follows the announcement earlier this month by Honduras’s President Xiomara Castro of plans to make the switch and a visit to China by a Honduran delegation headed up by foreign minister, Eduardo Enrique Reina. A statement by Honduras’s foreign ministry highlights that the two countries have agreed to cooperate in issues of mutual interest and to promote the signing of agreements in areas such as finance, trade, infrastructure, energy, technology, culture, tourism, education, and health, among others. A report by Honduras’s central bank (BCH) released last month showed that even before relations had been formalised, China was a significant trading partner, accounting for 14% (US$2bn) of Honduras’s imports and US$10.6m of exports last year. This compares with Taiwan which accounted for US$92.7m of imports and US$120.5m of exports. Honduras’s switch leaves just Guatemala and Belize aligned with Taiwan in Central America, formerly a major Tapei ally. Costa Rica first made the switch from Taiwan to China in June 2007 followed by Panama (2017), the Dominican Republic (2018), El Salvador (2018), and Nicaragua (2021).

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