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China, Africa join hands to set a fine example of mutually beneficial cooperation

OPINION
By Xhinua | January 10th 2020

China stands ready to work with Africa to set a fine example of mutually beneficial cooperation between developing countries, a senior Chinese official said on Friday.

Yang Jiechi, a member of the Political Bureau of the Communist Party of China (CPC) Central Committee, made the remark upon wrapping up his visits to Uganda, the Republic of the Congo and Senegal.

Yang, also director of the Office of the Foreign Affairs Commission of the CPC Central Committee, told Xinhua that he met with the presidents of the three countries and held talks with their foreign ministers, reaching common understandings.

"China, the world's largest developing country, and Africa, the continent with the largest number of developing countries, have supported and cooperated closely with each other in international affairs," Yang said.

“A land of promise"

Calling Africa "a land of promise,'' Yang noted that the continent has come a long way in its development and shows enormous potential for growth.

"With the official launch of the African Continental Free Trade Area, Africa has come to a critical stage in its transformation and development," he said.

Now is a prime time for China and Africa to advance their cooperation under the framework of the Belt and Road Initiative (BRI), he added.

According to Yang, 44 African countries and the African Union (AU) Commission have signed BRI cooperation documents with China.

Steps have been taken to enhance synergy between China-Africa Belt and Road cooperation with the AU's Agenda 2063, the United Nations' 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development and the development strategies of African countries, Yang said, adding that enhanced strategic coordination between the two sides serves each of their common interests.

Aerial photo taken on April 8, 2019 shows the Maputo Bay Bridge in Maputo, Mozambique. The bridge is part of the Maputo Bridge and Link Roads project built by the China Road and Bridge Corporation, with Chinese standards and financing support. (Xinhua/Zhang Yu)

China's commitment

"Some people who are unhappy about the growing China-Africa relations have made groundless accusations to defame and attack our cooperation," Yang said, adding that such irresponsible behavior has been refuted by both China and Africa.

He said China's cooperation with Africa has followed an approach of no interference in African countries' internal affairs, no imposition of China's will on African countries, no attachment of political strings to assistance to Africa, and no seeking of political interests in investment and financing cooperation with Africa.

China's cooperation with Africa does not target any third party, he noted, adding that "those who attempt to sow discord between China and Africa will find no audience in Africa. Those who attempt to undermine the traditional friendship between China and Africa will only fail."

As Africa's good friend, partner and brother, China will continue to firmly support Africa's efforts to seek strength through unity and the economic and social development of African countries, Yang said.

Growing china-africa friendship

Given that 2020 will mark the 20th anniversary of the Forum on China-Africa Cooperation (FOCAC), Yang said China will work closely with Senegal as co-chairs, and with other African countries to maintain close high-level exchanges and deepen Belt and Road cooperation.

Since the inception of FOCAC in October 2000, seven ministerial conferences and three summits have been held, thanks to the concerted efforts of China and Africa.

"Rain or shine, China will continue to stick together with Africa, shoulder to shoulder and hand in hand, to carry forward this friendship," Yang said. 

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