On September 13, at the invitation of SCAU, Augusto Valderrama, Minister of Agriculture and Animal Husbandry Development of Panama, led a delegation to SCAU. Li Fengliang, Chairman of the university committee, received the guests. The two sides held a discussion and signed a MoU.
Li Fengliang extended warm welcome and sincere greetings to the delegation. He said that the people of China and Panama have a deep historical relationship. Since the establishment of their diplomatic relations in 2017, the cooperation between the two countries in agriculture, trade, innovation, people-to-people and other fields has achieved fruitful results. Among them, the bilateral agricultural cooperation is highly complementary and promising, which is not only conducive to the agricultural modernization process of both sides, but also helps to promote the joint construction of the Belt and Road initiative. It is expected that the delegation's visit as a new starting point should promote the stability and long-term development of the bilateral agricultural cooperation.
Augusto Valderrama said that Panama-China exchanges have a history of more than 170 years. Chinese people are important participants in Panamanian society and have made important contributions in various fields, enriching Panama's multi-ethnic and multicultural characteristics. Today, the world is facing major issues such as food security and climate change. China has made great achievements in economic and modern agricultural development in the past few decades, which is a major reference for Panama which is willing to continue to strengthen bilateral ties and cooperation to better benefit the two countries and peoples.
At the meeting, Augusto Valderrama listened to the development of SCAU and the China-Latin America Agricultural Education and Research Innovation Alliance (hereinafter referred to as CLARIA). He said that South China Agricultural University has a long history and strong educational strength. He hoped that under the background of the deepening of bilateral agricultural cooperation and exchanges, the potential of agricultural science and education cooperation will be digged out and more practical achievements will appear. Both sides agreed to deepen cooperation in agricultural talent exchanges, joint construction of joint laboratories and modern agricultural demonstration parks, and people-to-people exchanges, promote the transfer of advanced agricultural technologies, help China-Panama agriculture and business development, and actively respond to risks and challenges such as the global food crisis and climate change.
After the meeting, the delegation came to the College of Agriculture where they visited the Crop Resource Efficient Laboratory with great interest and expressed their admiration while listening to the introduction by the college leaders and experts.
Subsequently, in order to feel the achievements of the integrated development of industry, university and research and rural revitalization, the delegation visited the modern agricultural demonstration enterprises cooperating with SCAU and held a forum with enterprise representatives talking about smart agriculture and the management experience of modern agricultural enterprises. During the visit to the processing plants of Conghua Hualong Fruit and Vegetable Preservation Co., Ltd., HeDaofeng Agricultural Science and Technology Development Co., Ltd. and Conghua Fragrant Rice Industrial Park, the minister and his delegation praised the achievements made in the construction of China's beautiful countryside and said that they would manage to implement the agricultural technical cooperation soon according to the MoU with SCAU.
Since SCAU led the establishment of CLAERIA in December 2020, it has actively explored and deepened contacts and cooperation with Latin American universities, scientific research institutions and enterprises. At present, the Alliance has 70 members, including 48 Latin American universities and scientific research institutions such as the University of Panama. It has been making progress while more than 50 cooperation agreements have been signed and many projects have been implemented.
Anaris Cedeño, Director of Trade Policy of the Ministry of Agriculture and Animal Husbandry Development of Panama, Yamileth Ye Li, Consul General of Panama in Guangzhou, and Jonathan Nunez, Counsellor of the Embassy of Panama in China, accompanied the Minister to SCAU. Leaders and teacher representatives from some colleges of SCAU attended the activities.