TODAY June 24th and 25th, Beijing would host a summit on the implementation of the Forum on China-Africa Cooperation (FOCAC)’ outcomes.
Coordinated at the Ministerial- level with officials from China and 54 African member states in attendance, Tanzania would be represented by Prof Palamagamba Kabudi, who the Minister for Foreign Affairs and East African Cooperation.
It will also mark his first visit outside Africa, which fully shows that the Tanzanian government attaches great importance to and strongly supports the development of China-Tanzania relations and that of the FOCAC.
Prof Kabudi will meet with Chinese State Councillor and Minister of Foreign Affairs Wang Yi, where cooperation agreements will be signed and as well as expected more consensus and outcomes for China-Tanzania cooperation.
Today, the international situation continues to undergo intricate changes and there is a rising trend of protectionism and unilateral actions.
The Coordinators’ Meeting is convened that in order to enhance the synergy of efforts in implementing the outcomes of the FOCAC Beijing Summit and to ensure the good quality and sustainability of China-Africa cooperation, it will bring onboard the FOCAC outcomes closer to the peoples of China and Africa and with more tangible benefits.
It would also serve to testify the strong will and commitment from both China and Africa in enhancing cooperation, upholding multilateralism and promoting an evercloser community of shared future between China and Africa.
Tanzania and China have maintained a traditional partnership, with long-term cooperation at all levels across the board.
Since the FOCAC Beijing Summit in September 2018, both sides have devoted themselves to the implementation of its outcomes and yielded important progress and initial results.
Frequent high-level exchanges There is a high degree of consensus between political leadership of both countries on the development of friendship and cooperation.
In the course, China has seen a number of high-level visits since last year, including the visits by Hon. Kassim Majaliwa (Prime Minister) attending the FOCAC Beijing Summit and Hon. Ummy Mwalimu, Minister of Health, Community Development, Gender, Elderly and Children for inspecting some Hospitals and Pharmaceutical Companies.
The list also includes Hon. Isack Kamwelwe, the Minister for Works, Transport and Communication, participating in the 2nd Belt and Road Forum for International Cooperation.
While from China, Cai Dafeng, Vice Chairman of the NPC Standing Committee and Song Tao, head of the International Department of the Communist Party of China (CPC) Central Committee, both visited Tanzania.
China and Tanzania jointly hosted the CPC in dialogue with World Political Parties High-Level Meeting Africa Thematic Event in Dar es Salaam, which served as a platform for exchanges on governance.
In July this year, Hon. Job Ndugai, Speaker of the National Assembly, and Hon. Zubeir Ali Maulid, Speaker of the House of Representatives of Zanzibar will also visit China.
Such frequent exchanges of visit among the leaders of the government, legislative body and political parties have consolidated the foundation of our political mutual trust.
Effective policy communication Over the past year, China hosted several important events, including the 2nd Belt and Road Forum for International Cooperation and the FOCAC Beijing Summit.
Tanzania has been sending high level delegations to all events and made full use of such opportunities to discuss cooperation with Chinese colleagues.
In Tanzania, Chinese embassy co-hosted a number of seminars and forums with Ministry for Foreign Affairs and East African Cooperation, and Ministry of Industry and Trade, including China-Tanzania High-Level Dialogue on Investment and Business Environment, Conference on Belt and Road Initiative and China-Tanzania Industrialization Cooperation, and China- Tanzania Forum on Investment and Trade Promotion.
These events have facilitated communication and deepen understanding between governments and businesses. Wide-range pragmatic cooperation China is the largest trading partner of Tanzania and in 2018, our bilateral trade volume reached USD 3.976 billion.
In November last year, the Tanzania Trade Development Authority organised a group of Tanzanian enterprises to participate in the First China International Import Expo.
At the Expo, cashew nuts, coffee and other distinctively local agricultural products as well as rich tourism resources in Tanzania were showcased, gaining the popularity among Chinese consumers.
On June 27th this year, China is going to organise the First China-Africa Economic and Trade Expo in Changsha, Hunan Province at which Tanzania will be one of the six African guest countries of honour.
In November 5th this year, China is going to organise the Second China International Import Expo in Shanghai. On this occasion, Tanzania will also be invited to participate and build its national pavilion at the Expo.
I believe these two events are going to further promote the export of Tanzanian products to China and the rest of the world. China is the largest source country of investment in Tanzania.
By March 2019, China has invested an accumulative amount of USD 6 billion in Tanzania.
The Shinyanga Cotton Industrial Park, Oil Processing Factory of Sunshine Industrial Ltd. and a number of ceramics, iron and steel and construction materials factories with Chinese investment have laid the foundation for Tanzania to realize its industrialization goal and brought goods of excellent quality and reasonable price to Tanzanian people.
Moreover, China stands as the main partner of Tanzania in contracted projects. Recent two years have witnessed the Tanzanian government building or upgrading airports, ports, railways, roads and other infrastructures, a large number of which were constructed by Chinese companies. The good quality, reasonable price and high efficiency have won China the compliments from Tanzania.
Besides, China has offered its utmost assistance to Tanzania’s economic and social development. The Dar es Salaam University Library and the Moshi Police Academy Expansion, Project, both built with China’s gratis aid, have become the new milestones of China-Tanzania friendship.
Increasing People-to-people exchange On the one hand, China continues to provide about 200 government scholarship and 400 short-term training opportunities to young people in Tanzania this year, with a view to helping Tanzania train much-needed talents in such fields as medical care, infrastructure and transport.
On the other hand, tourism cooperation between our two countries are further strengthened. This year, when the first group of over 300 Chinese tourists arrived in Tanzania on a chartered plane, they were warmly welcomed by Prime Minister Majaliwa.
This year, Air Tanzania is expected to launch the direct flight between Guangzhou, China and Dar es Salaam which is destined to further facilitate the exchanges between our two peoples and cooperation in various fields.
Since the 2018 FOCAC Beijing Summit, China and Tanzania have achieved a series of cooperative results, which is attributed to the profound China-Tanzania friendliness and highlights the rich cooperation potentials between our two countries.
Both countries enjoy not only the good political will to deepen all-round cooperation, but also important development conditions of complementary advantages.
China always upholds the principles of sincerity, practical results, affinity and good faith in developing its relations with Tanzania and encourages enterprises with strength, reputation and competitiveness to follow marketing principles and international rules while abiding by the local laws in investing and conducting cooperation in Tanzania.
Chinese enterprises boast the spirit of putting quality at the first place, adhere to the concept of conducting longterm cooperation while placing friendship first in pursuing common interests, hold the sense of responsibility to help the local government find out solutions and seek benefits for the local people.
All these have led to the wide welcome Chinese enterprises have received from Tanzania and other developing countries.
The Chinese Embassy will further encourage the Chinese enterprises investing in Tanzania to take an active role and contribute to Tanzania’s national development.
China and Tanzania just reached new consensus on a number of key projects to be explored for implementation under the Eight Major Initiatives announced at the 2018 FOCAC Beijing Summit.
Looking into the future, all are convinced that based on the principle of achieving shared growth through discussion and collaboration and the two countries can make persistent efforts in pushing forward the launch of more projects in Tanzania, practically turning our political mutual trust into the driving force for our economic and trade cooperation and thus making positive contributions to the development of both countries and the welfare of our two people.
- The writer, is H.E. Wang Ke, Ambassador of the People’s Republic of China to the United Republic of Tanzania.