Beijing, China – A Chinese Diplomat has recalled the vital role African countries played in ensuring that the People’s Republic of China regained its status at the United Nations, while calling on African journalists to help strengthen the ties between Africa and China.
Report by Alpha Daffae Senkpeni, [email protected]
Li Zhaoxing, President of China Public Diplomacy Association, recalled the events of October 25, 1971, when the PRC was overwhelmingly supported by 26 African countries including Liberia for the Asian nation to become readmitted into the world’s most powerful body.
Li said although 35 Western countries opposed China at the time, the African countries’ support almost five decades ago makes his country and Africa to enjoy even stronger ties.
“So China and African countries are forever friends; China has returned to the United Nations mainly due to the support from African friends. And at the beginning of this year, our Minister Yang Jiechi has been to African countries to show our gratitude for the support of our returning to the United Nations,” he said.
He was speaking on Wednesday, March 1, 2017 at the official joint opening ceremony of the China Africa Press Center (CAPC) and the China South Asia and South East Asia Press Center (CSASEAPC) programs. The program was held in Beijing, China and was graced by several African and Asian countries ambassadors and diplomats.
The President of China Public Diplomacy Association, who served for many years in several positions at the PRC Ministry of Foreign Affairs, also ambassador to the United States between 1998 and 2001 and later permanent representative to the United Nations, admonished the 29 African journalists and their 15 Asian counterprts to contribute to the strengthening of relations between China and their respective nations.
One African journalist each was selected from Liberia, Ghana, Nigeria, Serra Leone, Ivory Coast, Cameroon, Togo, Mauritania, Egypt, Malawi, Zambia, Kenya, Tanzania, Zimbabwe, Uganda, Mauritius, Ethiopia, Angola, Mozambique, Rwanda, Botswana, Burundi, South Africa, Senegal, Gabon, South Sudan, Sudan, Congo Brazzaville and the Democratic Republic of Congo.
“I hope our journalist friends from African and Asian countries can take this opportunity with the guidance and support from your embassy and our Association to play more in China and visit places, understanding more,” Li said. “And I hope you will make a contribution to our friendship and cooperation.”
He continued: “And with our appreciation and devotion, I hope the tree of our friendship between China and the rest of the world will become more flourish and the world will become more harmonious and prosperous.”
Speaking on behalf of the African Journalists, Bukola Ogunsina of Nigeria thanked the CPAC for the program and assured that she and her colleagues will work to gain insight and build memories of China, which is regarded as a very complex country.
“China’s complexity indeed is what makes it a beautiful and intriguing country. We are eager to know, interview and report the true China, removing all doubts and to learn more about what makes China, China,” Ogunsina said.
“We will learn, and from the facts, we will gather the truth. We will indeed pay attention. When we get back to our various countries, we will definitely share our knowledge with our people, for a better understanding of China for the strengthening of multilateral ties and cooperation, not just between the government of our countries and China, but indeed our people and your people.”
China’s economic prowess and influence is becoming glaring across the Africa continent and with its 2016 economic growth amounting to 33.2% of the world’s economy growth, African countries are looking to tap into some China’s enormous valuable opportunities to grow their respective economies.
China Maintains Economic Prowess
Already, China is enjoying massive economic growth and political stability and is looking to cement its presence across the world.
As the world’s second strongest economy, China recorded the highest growth in 2016 amongst the top countries in the world.
At a press conference held by the Chinese People’s Political Consultative Conference (CPPCC) on Thursday, February 2 in Beijing at the Great Hall of the People, the CPPCC spokesman said China’s economy expanded by 6.7 last year, adding that it is a good start for the country’s 13th Five-Year Plan which started in 2016 and ends in 2020.
China’s economy is expected to remain the strongest engine for world economic growth in 2017, spokesperson of the top political advisory body, Wang Guoqing said at the press conference.
The World Bank’s statistics show China’s 2016 growth accounts for about a third of the whole world’s economic growth. And Wang was optimistic that since China enjoys stability, and is making continues efforts to make solid progress, the country’s economy will lead the world.