by Xinhua Writer Xia Lin
LIMA, Nov. 16 (Xinhua) -- As the Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation (APEC) week enters the second day on Tuesday, officials and residents in Lima are obviously spirited up by the event.
This year's APEC week is expected to attract around 8,000 participants in 150 events running from Monday to Sunday.
"China has become our main customer and largest trading partner. We already have a free trade agreement and even a comprehensive strategic agreement for deep integration. We have made much progress in our relationship," Peruvian Second Vice President Mercedes Araoz told Xinhua in an interview on Tuesday.
"Peru has changed a lot over the time. It has grown a lot. We now have a lot more investment in the Asia-Pacific than before. Last year we received 8 billion U.S. dollars of investment, with much more trade," he added.
Among various events, there's a business forum called the CEO Summit, during which Chinese President Xi Jinping will deliver a speech.
"The APEC CEO Summit is very important. It is fundamental because it connects us to the world, it connects us to the most important markets that we can (get) access," said Carlos Galvez, president of the National Society of Mining, Oil and Energy.
The summit will bring business leaders like Jack Ma, founder of China's e-commerce giant Alibaba, and Mark Zuckerberg, founder of Facebook, to Peru, where they will meet with their Peruvian counterparts. "The event will help promote trade and investment," said Galvez.
On the first day of the APEC week, business leaders from China and Peru signed agreements worth 2 billion dollars.
The APEC week will culminate with the Economic Leaders' Meeting on Sunday, when the economic leaders convene to shape the future of the Asia-Pacific.
Fernando Nunez, a local driver, hopes that leaders of major economic powers would help Peru advance forward.
Oscar Cornetero, a journalist who has been reporting on this year's APEC meetings, noted that world leaders like Xi, Russian President Vladimir Putin and U.S. President Barack Obama will attend the meeting. "It is very important and they will somehow interact with (Peruvian) President (Pedro Pablo) Kuczynski," he added.
APEC, founded in 1989, is a forum of 21 economies in the Asia-Pacific region. The APEC economies, home to around 2.8 billion people, represent 57 percent of global GDP and half of global trade.