LA PAZ — The “socialist policies” have made China the world’s second largest economy, “a productive and complementary economy for the benefit of all peoples,” former Bolivian President Evo Morales has said.
China’s development is in sharp contrast with the “individualistic and competitive predatory” behaviors by the United States and the West for decades, Morales, also chairperson of Bolivia’s Movement Towards Socialism party, said in an interview with Xinhua.
Morales expressed his admiration to the Chinese government and people over China’s achievements since the founding of the Communist Party of China (CPC) 100 years ago.
China’s achievements in poverty alleviation have also impressed Morales, who said the fact that China has lifted over 700 million people out of extreme poverty “caught my attention.”
Putting people first is the vision shared by the CPC and Bolivia’s Movement Towards Socialism party, according to the former president.
“What unites … the Communist Party of China and the Movement Towards Socialism … is that: first the people, first the humble people, first poor people, seeking equality, (and) fighting, working for equality,” said Morales.
Morales spoke highly of the Belt and Road Initiative (BRI) proposed by Chinese President Xi Jinping, as well as the principles of extensive consultation, joint contribution and shared benefits.
Noting that the BRI will benefit not only Chinese people but also many other peoples across the world, Morales expressed his “respect” and “admiration” to the Chinese president, the CPC, and the Chinese people “for projecting humanity thinking.”
According to Morales, Bolivia has considered the plan of building a railway linking South America’s Atlantic and Pacific coasts, which would benefit not only Bolivia, but also other South American countries.
By aligning with the BRI, such a plan could create more space for cooperation between Bolivia and China, he said.
China’s commitment to multilateralism, international law and the United Nations is “extremely important” for tackling today’s global challenges, Morales said, adding that the current challenges, such as climate change and social inequality, “can only be solved through true global cooperation.”
Morales said his country and China maintain a relationship marked by broad and diverse cooperation, and reciprocal respect, which has fostered the development of political trust, economic complementarity and mutual learning.
“China is more than 17,300 km away from Bolivia, but that distance has not been, and is not, an obstacle to strengthening our ties of brotherhood and cooperation,” he added.