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Belt and Road forum strengthens trade ties, sounds call against protectionism
May 17,2017   By:Xinhua

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May 17, 2017 -- Chinese President Xi Jinping, foreign delegation heads and guests pose for a group photo at the Leaders' Roundtable Summit of the Belt and Road Forum (BRF) for International Cooperation at Yanqi Lake International Convention Center in Beijing, capital of China, May 15, 2017. (Xinhua/Yao Dawei)

BEIJING, May 17, 2017 -- The Belt and Road Forum for International Cooperation (BRF) concluded here Monday, and officials and experts said the forum has strengthened international trade ties and sounded a call against protectionism.

The forum has strengthened international trade ties and sought new channels of distributing goods to bring about mutual benefit for all, said Ignacio Martinez Cortes, head of the Research Laboratory for Trade, Economy and Business.

"It is also a call against protectionism," Martinez Cortes said in an interview with Xinhua in Mexico.

China's new commercial strategy will allow Latin America and the Caribbean to join this drive of "opening up, inclusiveness and mutual benefits," said the Mexican expert on China affairs when talking about the two-day forum held in Beijing.

The Belt and Road Initiative breaks with both regionalism and corporate-driven global supply chains and will benefit Latin America in the two fields of raw materials and added-value technologies, he said.

The initiative "is the gateway" to international free trade and sustainable development, and also "more focused on investment, infrastructure and development, instead of just on trade," he said.