Beijing, China.- China and Cuba have strengthened their economic ties on Thursday with the signing of several memorandums of understanding, including one regarding expanded cooperation in the Belt and Road Initiative.

After the official talks between Presidents Xi Jinping and Miguel Diaz-Canel, the sides signed agreements to increase production capacity in cooperation priority projects and the granting of a Chinese loan to support the purchase of construction equipment for the renewable energy and tourism industries.

A second text refers to the supply of machinery to increase the production of various crops in the eastern province of Guantanamo and the latest to the delivery of projects from canned fruit and vegetable factories.

Zhao Bentang, director general for Latin America and the Caribbean at the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, told Prensa Latina these agreements will boost, guide and give more impetus to the future development of bilateral relations. China, he said, welcomes Cuba to the Belt and Road Initiative and commits to expanding investments and other business plans under international market principles.

Zhao described the meetings Diaz-Canel held here as successful and the starting point for raising Beijing-Havana ties to higher levels.

The signing of the cooperation mechanisms took place during the last day of the Cuban president’s state visit to China, the first after taking office last April

Diaz-Canel visited and placed offerings in front of the monuments of Mao Zedong, founder of this nation as Republic in 1949, and of the People’s Heroes in the symbolic Tian’anmen Square.

He was greeted in the afternoon at the Grand People’s Palace by the president of the National People’s Assembly, Li Zhanshu, PM Li Keqiang, and Xi Jinping, who also officially welcomed him to China.