Beijing, China – Africans and Chinese officials representing friendship organizations and their respective governments have echoed the significance of working toward a share future.
In separate remarks at the China-Africa Friendship organization leaders meeting in Beijing on Tuesday, November 14, the Chinese and Africans stakeholders called for deepening cooperation through the Belt and Road Initiative to foster connectivity and mutual benefits for their respective peoples.
Abdul’ahat Abdurixit, President of the Chinese-African People’s Friendship Association (CAPFA), reemphasized the Chinese government commitment to building a “new type of international relationship” towards a community of share benefits.
He said the friendship between China and Africa sticks to the principles of affinity, good results and good faith for their two peoples.
“China always relate our future to the future of Africans destiny,” Mr. Abdurixit said during his opening remarks at the one-day event.
The gathering was held under the theme, “New opportunities for the Belt and Road and Africa-China Cooperation”.
Stressing the significance of the Belt and Road Initiative (BRI), he said it promotes new cooperation and inspires win-win cooperation for the economic development of human lives and combines China and Africa dreams so that their respective peoples can live better lives.
In context, the BRI is China’s solution to broadening globalization amongst development countries through win-win cooperation for mutual and share benefits.
The world second largest economy says it wants to share its development experience and innovation with the rest of the world by improving “connectivity and people-to-people exchanges for a share future of mankind”.
“I believe that our African friends believe that when we go together we can go further,” the CAPFA president said of the prospect of working with African countries to further deepening cooperation.
Ambassador Victor Sikonina, Madagascar ambassador to China and Dean of African Diplomatic Corps to China, said the success of the 19th Congress of the Communist Party China, which ended last month, will “undoubtedly play an important role in the development of Africa and ensure common prosperity of the two sides”.
Ambassador Sikonina said African countries can play an important role in the BRI and should not be viewed as “second-class partners”.
The Director General of the Department of African Affairs at China’s Ministry of Foreign Affairs also reemphasized President Xi Jinping’s commitment to partnership by “seeking opportunities that are complimentary to building a destiny of share interest”.
Mr. Da Bing said for China and Africa’s dreams to be realized, further enhancement of the partnership is vital, adding, “China is willing to open new platforms to advance cooperation”.
According to Mr. Da, there are already over 3,000 Chinese companies operating across the African continent; 2,000 Chinese projects in African countries, over 500,000 Chinese tourists visiting Africa annually and 60,000 African students studying in China.
This, he said, are references that the two sides cooperation is deepening and sharing experiences in social governance is important to achieve people’s development for the betterment of their lives.
Kgosi Puso Gaborone, president of the Botswana-China Friendship Association, described the gathering as a “great opportunity” to unite, collaborate, exchange ideas, and share experiences to enhance mutual understanding, promote peace, people-to-people friendship and deepen ties between China and Africa.
Friendship has been the “bedrock” of diplomatic relations between China and African countries, he said, emphasizing that people-to-people friendship is the “foundation that flourishes diplomatic ties”.
“It is very important for non-governmental organizations here in China and in Africa to make contributions toward promoting friendship between China and Africa especially at the grassroots level,” said Gaborone, whose association was established February 2009 to further promote friendship between Chinese community in Botswana and local people.
He expressed confidence that the cooperation between China and Africa would only enter a “new phase” while describing the prospects and opportunities of the Belt and Road Initiative as “golden opportunity” for regional and sustainable economic growth of Africa.
“In this new phase, China and Africa friendship will face new challenges and opportunities (but) the best way to address these challenges is to simply turn them into opportunities,” he said; calling for more African stakeholders to participate in the BRI to expand exchanges between China and Africa.
“Let us, therefore; seize the opportunities; face them head-on by deepening the friendly cooperation amongst ourselves and through other associations.”