BEIJING, Dec. 14, 2023 /PRNewswire/ — The China-aided mega modern library, located in the historic center of El Salvador’s capital San Salvador, will not only help to propel educational, cultural, and technological development in the country, but also stands as a monument of friendship between China and the Central American country, Chinese ambassador to El Salvador told the Global Times.
The ambassador expressed his belief that the relationship between China and El Salvador has become a model for mutually beneficial cooperation between countries of different sizes and different social systems, and has played a positive role in Central America.
The library, the first aid project between China and El Salvador after the establishment of diplomatic relations in 2018, was officially opened to the public in November. El Salvador’s President Nayib Bukele participated in the lighting ceremony of the library’s decorative external lights, and expressed gratitude to China for bringing such modern architecture to El Salvador.
In February 2022, Bukele inaugurated the construction of the library. At a solemn ceremony, he declared that the construction of this cultural center was accomplished thanks to a donation from the Chinese government, as a result of the visit made by the Salvadoran president to China in 2019.
The president said the new national library will be the biggest cultural investment in the last century of El Salvadoran history, representing “a legacy for new generations.”
“As of now, the number of visitors has exceeded 100,000, with many people even queuing up until the early hours of the morning to enter the library,” Zhang Yanhui, Chinese Ambassador to El Salvador, told the Global Times on Monday. He noted that the library has become the hottest spot for photo taking and a new landmark in the historic center of the capital.
Monument of friendship
The Chinese ambassador revealed that the library is a building with seven floors above ground and one floor below ground, with a total construction area of approximately 24,000 square meters.
In consideration of the region geology which is prone to earthquakes, the building is equipped with excellent seismic performance. The latest technologies have also been adopted in areas such as digital, audio and lighting facilities.
After having successfully overcoming the adverse effects of the COVID-19 pandemic, the project was completed on schedule, becoming the first Chinese aid project to be delivered for use in El Salvador. Zhang said it is a concrete achievement of cooperation between China and El Salvador, and also a monument of friendship between the two countries.
In August 2018, China and El Salvador signed a joint communiqué in Beijing on the establishment of diplomatic relations.
China also offered help to El Salvador in combating COVID-19. Salvadoran Health Minister Francisco Alabi said in 2021 that China’s cooperation with El Salvador in the health sector was fundamental to combating the COVID-19 epidemic in the Central American country. He noted that the timely arrivals of several batches of COVID-19 vaccines from China ensured that the elderly, medical staff, and other high-risk groups in El Salvador were vaccinated first.
Zhang said that in 2022, the bilateral trade volume between China and El Salvador reached $1.89 billion, an increase of 73.4 percent compared to 2018.
The ambassador also mentioned that Chinese domestic car brands such as Geely have been selling well in El Salvador. China’s Southwest University of Science and Technology and the University of El Salvador co-established a Confucius Institute. Over 200 students from El Salvador have also come to China for further studies, said Zhang.
La Libertad Port project, supported by China, is about to be completed and delivered. The groundbreaking ceremonies for the National Stadium and the water treatment plant’s construction located on Lake Ilopango, near the capital, were successively held.
Currently, the security situation in El Salvador has improved and the business environment has been enhanced. More and more Chinese companies are going to El Salvador to explore opportunities and cooperate in various fields including transportation, infrastructure, education and energy. It is believed that with the deepening of bilateral relations, cooperation in various fields will achieve more fruitful results, benefiting both countries and their people, Zhang noted.
Zhang said that over the last five years, cooperation between China and El Salvador has deepened continuously, and China has been trying its best to provide sincere assistance to El Salvador’s development.
“The relationship between China and El Salvador has become a model for mutually beneficial cooperation between countries of different sizes and social systems. It has played a positive role in the region,” said Zhang, noting that more countries have seen the bright prospects and enormous potential of developing relations with China.
In recent years, China’s ties with Central American countries have grown tighter. Earlier this year, China and Honduras established diplomatic relations. In 2021, China and Nicaragua resumed diplomatic relations.
“Our circle of friends in Central America is expanding. China has always adhered to the principles of equality, mutual benefit, mutual respect, and non-interference in the internal affairs of other countries, and has developed friendly relations with countries around the world. We look forward to joining hands with more countries to a community of shared future for mankind and sharing a prosperous and beautiful future,” Zhang said.
SOURCE Global Times