OP ED: by James “JB” Bryson
So other than China being under Communist totalitarian rule, charged with a host of human rights violations, firm allies with Russia, Iran, North Korea, and Cuba, one of the nations that still recognize the Maduro rule in Venezuela, ………………….beyond that I can see exactly why Varela has had his tongue up their ass so much.
Now that he is on his way out, I can opine openly that Varela “looks” Presidential. He is handsome and refined. He says the right things. He comes off as a man of religion and virtue.
Yet as I have blogged of previously, he has maintained and even strengthened relationships with some of the most oppressive rulers of the present world. The same man who loved his photo ops with the Pope, has smiled in the same manner with Maduro, Oretga, and Morales.
The same man who seems so intent on castigating Martinelli, is just as complicit and involved with Odebrecht and other charges as his former boss.
I hope he finds a nice condo in Beijing, and we don’t have to see his “handsome” face anymore.
From April 1 to 3, 2019, the third official visit of President Juan Carlos Varela to China took place. The consulates of Guangzhou and Hong Kong were established, and there were also meetings with Chinese multinational companies with economic interests in Panama.
I had the opportunity to attend the event, organized by the Ministry of Commerce and Industry, called: Panama Invest and Fest. In this week’s episode, I share some comments I heard during the course of the visit.
President Juan Carlos Varela , who makes his third tour of the People’s Republic of China, met yesterday in Hong Kong with executives of China Communications Construction Company and its subsidiary China Harbor Engineering Company, responsible for the construction of the fourth bridge over the Canal.
Varela arrived in China on Sunday with the Minister of Commerce and Industries, Néstor González ; the Canal Minister and director of the Panama Metro, Roberto Roy ; the deputy administrator of Tourism, Marien Calviño; and Oscar Ramírez , director of the Tocumen airport and coordinator of the Tren Panamá-David project.
He is also accompanied by the first lady, Lorena Castillo de Varela , although her agenda is unknown on that trip. In photos disseminated by the Secretary of State Communication, he is seen accompanying the president in a meeting.
The president’s trip, which is not limited to China, but will also extend to Japan, comes at the end of his term and after long debates due to the warnings that the United States has made about the Panama-China relationship.
Although Varela announced last Friday, without going into details, that he would make the trip, it was not until last Sunday, when he was already in China, that the Presidency reported the trip.
The first time Varela traveled to China was in November 2017, after establishing diplomatic relations with that country.
This time, the Government disbursed $ 638 thousand in air tickets and per diem of some officials. Between the first lady, the president, the chancellor Isabel de Saint Malo, and the administrator of Tourism, Gustavo Him , spent $ 40 thousand in air tickets.
In 2018, Varela returned to China to inaugurate the Panama Pavilion at China International Import & Export, in Shanghai.
Now he does it to know the projects developed by the company that will build the fourth bridge over the Canal, among other things. “For our government, it is very important to be sure that one of the largest infrastructure megaprojects in the country has the support of world class companies, with an undeniable trajectory,” said Varela.
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