QUITO -- The Ecuadorian government hopes to receive nearly $2 billion from China to finance the construction of the country's largest hydroelectrical plant, Coca-Codo-Sinclaire, in the Amazon region.
President Rafael Correa said that on Friday he met in Quito with Chinese Vice Premier Hui Liangyu, who is on an official trip to Ecuador.
Beijing wants "to invest a lot in the country," said Correa in his regular weekly report broadcast Saturday on radio and television, in which he emphasized the presence in Ecuador of several Chinese firms.
"They're ready to give us $1.7 billion in financing for Coca-Codo-Sinclaire. This is extraordinary news, it's almost assured," although some details still remain to be worked out, Correa added.
In addition, the president said that China is ready to take part in the construction of the Pacific Refinery in the coastal province of Manabi, a project that state-run oil firm Petroecuador and Venezuela's corresponding company, PDVSA, are carrying out.
He also said that the Chinese cooperation offer includes other sectors, like the nation's roadways, and he emphasized Liangyu's visit because the latter is the highest-ranking Chinese official to come to Quito.
"It's impressive that in these two years Chinese cooperation and investment have increased" in Ecuador, said Correa, who came to power in January 2007.