Chinese Ambassador Ren Yisheng Assures Sustained Bilateral Cooperation with Liberia

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Monrovia – Chinese Ambassador to Liberia, Ren Yisheng has reaffirmed the Government of the People’s Republic China’s commitment to fostering a sustained bilateral cooperation with the Government of Liberia.

Speaking at the opening ceremony of the National Conference on the Right to Development (RTD) in Liberia on Monday, Ambassador Ren said in recent years, under the framework of the B&R Initiative advocated by President Xi Jinping and the “PAPD” advocated by President George Manneh Weah, China-Liberia cooperation in such areas as health care, infrastructure construction, food security, and human resource development has achieved fruitful results.

The Belt and Road (B&R) Initiative is an effort to develop an expanded, interdependent market for China, grow China’s economic and political power, and create the right conditions for China to build a high technology economy; while the Pro-Poor Agenda for Prosperity and Development 2018 to 2023 (PAPD) is the Government of Liberia’s flagship development program aimed at improving the living standard of Liberians. It is the second in the series of 5-year National Development Plans (NDP) anticipated under the Liberia Vision 2030 framework.

Ambassador Ren’s affirmation comes on the back of report and criticism that the China-Liberia relations, under President Weah is at an all-time low.

However, in his address, Ambassador Ren said, under current bilateral cooperation with Liberia, the Agricultural Technology Demonstration Center and the Bamboo and Rattan Weaving and Vegetable Planting Technology Project have graduated several hundreds of trainees each.

The Chinese Ambassador said currently, the two sides are actively implementing several development projects in Liberia including the Capital overpass bridges, clinical diagnosis and treatment laboratory and the Liberia Broadcasting System’s expansion and upgrade.

He also named the Somalia-Sinkor Road and Bridge construction project and plans seeking to expand cooperation in the fields of agricultural modernization, industrialization development, digital economy, green economy, smart city and telecommunication, electricity, and roads and among others.

The Chinese Government, in implementing the Nine Programs of FOCAC, he added, has applied a zero-tariff policy on 98% of imported goods from Liberia.

“We are ready to work with the Liberian side to build China-Liberia win-win cooperation into a demonstration zone for BRI international cooperation in West Africa,” the Chinese Ambassador said.

The Right to Development is an inalienable human right by virtue of which every human person and all peoples are entitled to participate in, contribute to, and enjoy economic, social, cultural and political development, in which all human rights and fundamental freedoms can be fully realized.

The conference is being jointly organized by the United Nations Office of the High Commission for Human Rights (OHCHR) and the Embassy of the People’s Republic of China in Liberia and runs from May 30 to 31, 2022.

It expected to access progress made in the implementation of the rights to development, articulate challenges, and opportunities, and provide recommendations to address the challenges.

Speaking further, Amb Ren stated that Liberia is rich in resources with hard-working people and have great potential for development; noting, as Africa’s oldest black republic, Liberia has actively supported the national liberation movement on the African continent and made great contributions to defending the human rights of the African people.

He expressed optimism that Liberia is expected to continue to set an example in defending and implementing the RTD.

“We are pleased to note that President George Manneh Weah has united and led all walks of life in Liberia to maintain domestic peace and stability, and fully implement the “Pro-poor Agenda for Prosperity and Development (PAPD). Liberia’s economy is developing rapidly, people’s livelihood has been improving, and development has achieved fruitful results with broad prospects.”

Speaking on his country’s role, he said China is an advocate, practitioner and promoter of the RTD, and believes that the rights to subsistence and development are the primary basic human rights.

In order to defend the RTD and promote the development and progress of all mankind, he noted that China has participated in the previous sessions of the governmental expert group that drafted the Declaration by the UN Commission on Human Rights (UNCHR), and made important contributions to the final adoption of the “Declaration”.

He added that China supports the actions of Office of the UN High Commissioner for Human Rights (OHCHR) in promoting the RTD around the world.

By serving as a co-host of the conference which is the first human rights seminar co-hosted by a diplomatic mission of the UN member states in Africa and the UNOHCHR, demonstrates a concrete measure by China to promote the RTD globally.

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