The People’s Republic of China has become a key reference point for the Latin America and the Caribbean (LAC) region: the learning of Chinese in LAC and of Spanish in China, cultural experiences, migration, cultural, educational and artistic exchanges; massive investment flows and trade at both micro- and macroeconomic level; political and strategic relations at bilateral and multilateral level, amongst many other areas of the relationship between these regions.
The efforts of the Union of Universities of Latin America and the Caribbean (UDUAL in Spanish) and the Chinese-Mexican Studies Center (CECHIMEX in Spanish), the Faculty of Economics of the National Autonomous University of Mexico (UNAM) on the relationship between China and LAC are particularly relevant, starting with the organization of the first International Seminar "China, Latin America and the Caribbean: Conditions and Challenges in the 21st Century" held in May of 2012. The seminar brought together a group of over 100 scholars, businessmen and government officials, who presented their research linked to the ALC-China relationship in four thematic areas: 1) economy, trade and investment; 2) political relations; 3) natural and environmental resources; and 4) history, culture and the learning of Chinese.
However, there are currently not enough efforts from Latin America to share the existing results and the LAC experiences regarding China. Particularly in academics, and beyond national institutions with valuable research and bi-national proposals, there is no existing network of studies and research on China in LAC. The Latin America and the Caribbean Network on China (abbreviated to RED ALC-CHINA in Spanish) was created in the context of the increasing efforts undertaken since at least the beginning of the XXI century in Latin America and the Caribbean as well as in China and other countries about the relationship between LAC and China.
There is a growing number of academic institutions that has been studying this relationship, but still, none is focused on enabling the dialogue and exchange of the results.