The following two articles focus on the relationship between China and Mexico’s economy. They were published in the International Herald Leader. They point out that, “As a close neighbor of the U.S., Mexico provides a rare market opportunity for China. Establishing mutual trust with Mexico is advantageous to China’s dealings with the U.S. in the event of a very likely new tide of trade protectionism in the Western Hemisphere. It may lead to the rising Chinese manufacturing industry opening a southern gate leading to the high-end market in North America.” These two articles cite some projects in the China-Mexico economic relationship. Below is a translation of the two articles.
In order to free itself from its dependence on the U.S. economy, the Mexican Government is training a large number of "China trade experts." Currently, the gross spending of this plan has exceeded 4 million USD.
Every March, dozens of Mexican students cross the ocean to go China. Their destinations are Zhejiang University and Fudan University. These students graduated from local institutions of higher learning and had work experience. They tell the International Herald Leader that learning the Chinese curriculum isn’t the only reason to study in China. How to do business with the Chinese is the ultimate goal of their further education.
They are the Mexico-China Trade Training Plan students that the Mexican government has dispatched to China to learn from their experiences. They resolve to become the business elites who will advance both countries’ trade and keenly seize the market trends.
All Levels of Government Invest in the Training Plan
For many years, Mexico has been busy doing business with the U.S., which accounts for nearly 80% of Mexico’s foreign trade. Mexico-China trade is less than one-tenth of the Mexico-U.S. trade. But at the present, an unceasing inrush of made-in-China [products] has forced Mexico to pay attention to Mexico-China economics and their trade relationship. The Mexico-China trade deficit continues to increase, while Mexican exports to China has made no progress. Many Mexican merchants hope to export products to China but feel they don’t know where to begin because of a lack of understanding of China. At the same time, the Western view that "China is a threat" deepens Mexican merchants’ worries about developing the Chinese market.
The "Mexico-China Trade Training Plan" was developed out of this background. According to sources, the Mexican Ministry of Economic Affairs, the Import-Export Bank, various state governments, universities, and research centers all jointly launched this plan. It was officially implemented in February 2005. Hereafter, every March and September, Mexico sends students to China to participate in one to two years of training. Students are eligible to receive $20,000 USD scholarships each year. The Mexican Federal Government pays one half and local governments pay the other half.
Candidate students are first recommended within the various states. First the National Economic Development Secretariat Association screens them. Then they are confirmed. According to the requirements, only those who have high academic degrees, work experience and have passed English tests are selected. So far, 11 states in Mexico have dispatched over 130 students to China. Spending on this plan has already reached over $4,000,000 USD.
Mexican officials told the reporter that the government hopes to take advantage of the developing trade with China to gain independence from the U.S. economy and to avoid being more limited by U.S. trade policies.
"Learning from Experience" in China Proves Difficult
Those who are lucky enough to come to China are the elite from various Mexican states. They have received basic training in Mexico beforehand. When they arrive, they go to Zhejiang University to study Chinese. Then they pursue advanced studies at Fudan University. Chinese, the history of modern Chinese economic development, the history of the development of thought and culture, and the history of the development of foreign trade are mandated subjects . Upon graduation, students must score 80% or better in each course to gain state government approval.
In order to intensify the study of the Chinese "business bible," these foreign students often need to take business trips to participate in various seminars, trade investment conferences, and exhibitions in Hong Kong, Beijing, and Guangzhou as well as to visit Chinese factories and mining enterprises.
For a majority of Mexican students, China is remote and strange. A student from Michoacán told the reporter that China was very different from what he imagined, "There is a lot of seasoning in the food with unknown names; delicious but curious." "The Chinese people are very diligent, with a higher desire to become rich than Mexicans." "China seems to lack nothing; [it] can even produce traditional Mexican handicrafts."
The most amazing thing to [Mexican] students is China’s huge consumer power. They find that many Chinese go abroad on their vacations. They often hope to go sightseeing in Mexico, so this is also a market worthy of the Mexican’s earnest consideration.
Graduates Show Their Skill
Because it hasn’t been long since the project started, the majority of Mexican students are still studying in China. Very few have graduated and returned to Mexico to work. However, a portion of the students have begun to taste the sweetness of training abroad. They told the reporter that some are working for enterprises in their state in order to connect them with Chinese enterprises. Some, after returning to Mexico, have worked in related government agencies. Some simply have established China trading companies.
In 2005, Michoacán’s Daniela Carlonell was among the first group of students to be dispatched to China. After graduating and returning home, she has been working in the government and responsible for the national “Mexico-China Trading Training Plan.” Carlos Moran, who was dispatched by Colima, is the former Colima branch chief of the Mexico Employers Association. He has already spent over four months in China. According to the particular circumstances of the state, he conducted more than 30 specific studies and found commercial export opportunities for products such as chicken feet, kelp, yogurt, etc. [He] has also provided business information for 67 enterprises that want to do business with China. Some students have also found export opportunities to China for Mexican skin care products and cosmetics, as well as health foods such as fruit juice, coffee and so on.
"I want to help enterprises in our state," a student by the name of Salvador Soares
told the reporter. He has studied for two years in China and will soon complete his studies. "I really don’t want to hear anymore about how ‘China is a threat.’ We should transform the so-called ‘threat’ into ‘business opportunities.’"
Knocking Open the South Gate of North America 
Mexico is the tenth largest economy in the world. It is also one of the countries most likely to adopt trade protectionism measures. Since joining the General Agreement on Tariffs and Trade in 1986, its strong stance and direct methods to protect its domestic market have been imitated by other developing nations. Last year, Mexico’s protective measures against Chinese import products such as steel, iron and textiles came down one after another. It was a looming force.
Now, without a doubt, it has the intention to know oneself and know one’s enemy in order to win every battle [when] this kind of a country begins to train "China trade experts." But looking at it from a geo-economic point of view, this is a positive signal.
As a close neighbor of the U.S., objectively Mexico provides a rare market opportunity for China. Establishing mutual trust with Mexico is advantageous to China’s contending with the U.S. in a very likely new tide of trade protectionism in the Western Hemisphere. [It can] lead the rising Chinese manufacturing industry to open the southern gate that leads to the high-end market in North America.
First, [one] must understand that many things will happen in the coming year that will affect the stability of the North America free trade area composed of the U.S., Canada and Mexico. China-Mexico economics and trade relations will subtly deepen with this background.
According to the goal of North America free trade area, by 2008, zero customs duty and the elimination of trade and investment limits should be completely reached. This is not a problem between America and Canada; only the weak Mexico is left out. After being a member of the free trade area for more than ten for years, although Mexico has obtained huge export profits and huge foreign investments, its national industries and agriculture have actually suffered heavy losses. At present, Mexico still has to safeguard the basic interest in exports to Canada and the United States and use it as a bargaining chip to protect its domestic interest.
Luckily, this is the year of a U.S. presidential election. The Democratic Party presidential candidates have formed a united front, and all think that continuing to advance the North America Free Trade Agreement violates the national interest. They blame American unemployment and declining living standards on the inexpensive-product-and-labor-providing Mexico, [and] advocated revising and even abandoning the Free Trade Agreement. When the American economy is not booming, passing the burden of the crisis wins support. Although men of insight remind the U.S. not to dump the problem on its neighbor, this voice appears very weak.
Mexico understands that in order to achieve maximum benefit from global trade, it cannot depend only on U.S. arrangements. If the Democratic Party wins the election and raises a big stick against Mexican products, folks in history will sigh once more, "Pitiful Mexico—so far away from God, yet so close to the U.S." The current political situation of the North American free trade area paints the background for Mexico’s urgent need for "China Trade Experts."
China has become Mexico’s second largest trading partner after the U.S. Although there are obvious disparities between China-Mexico trade and U.S.-Mexico trade, it has already seen the best result among its trading partners, outside of local areas. Mexico is willing to approach and fully communicate with China. [This] means expanding bilateral common interests day after day and an unwillingness to see U.S. trade protectionism casts its shadow on its economic development.
China’s brightest investment outlook in Mexico is in the manufacturing industry. Taking advantage of its production strength and superior export geography, [China] may open up new markets in North and Latin America. More than three months ago, a Chinese auto group began a joint venture to construct a base for passenger vehicle production. [This] indicates that Chinese investment in Mexico is transforming towards high-tech levels. This may foreshadow Chinese automobiles entering the American market.
 International Herald Leader, March 10, 2008
 International Herald Leader, March 10, 2008
 Included in these courses, and especially in the history of the development of thought and culture, is indoctrination to the communist worldview.