Author: Ana Alves.
In October 2003, Macau hosted the first ministerial meeting of the Forum for Trade and Economic Cooperation between China and Portuguese-speaking countries, bringing together high-level representatives from Angola, Brazil, Cape Verde, East Timor, Guinea-Bissau, Mozambique, Portugal, Macau and China. The idea to create this China–Lusophone countries Forum was developed between the Chinese Ministry of Commerce (MOFCOM) and the Executive Government of Macau Special Administrative Region (SAR) not long after Macau’s handover to China on 20 December 1999. Trade between China and the Lusophone countries has risen rapidly, along with soaring Chinese investment and development aid, with a special focus on the African Portuguese-speaking countries. This report asks why China is interested in the Lusophone countries, assesses China’s strengthening bond with them, asks what the Lusophone countries themselves gain from the relationship, and analyses how the Macau forum specifically works.