AT a joint press conference on Friday with Minister for Foreign Affairs and East African Cooperation, Prof Palamagamba Kabudi, in Chato, Chinese State Councillor and Foreign Minister Wang Yi was asked about the implementation of the outcomes of the 2018 FOCAC Beijing Summit, as 2021 is the concluding year for follow-ups and priorities at the next FOCAC meeting.
Wang Yi said the 2018 FOCAC Beijing Summit was a success and a new milestone in China-Africa friendship and cooperation. He gave a brief review of what has been accomplished during the past two years.
China and Africa have worked closely on all eight major initiatives, namely industrial promotion, infrastructure connectivity, trade facilitation, green development, capacity building, healthcare, people-to-people exchange and peace and security.
Over 70 per cent of the summit outcomes have been delivered. China and Africa have steadily advanced the Belt and Road cooperation. Despite the pandemic, over 1,100 cooperation projects have kept going and nearly 100,000 Chinese technicians and engineers worked dutifully amidst the Covid-19 pandemic.
Their efforts have contributed to the economic and social well-being of local communities. China and Africa have further enhanced their people-to-people ties. The China-Africa Institute was inaugurated. A number of Confucius institutes have been opened in African countries.
Interactions in the fields of culture, arts, sports, health, tourism and between young people have been fruitful. Eleven pairs of sister cities have been established, bringing the total number to 150. Wang Yi said Covid-19 had not kept China and Africa from advancing their cooperation.
China and Africa plan to have the next FOCAC meeting in Senegal later in the year. China will communicate closely with African friends. In light of new developments, new opportunities of cooperation between China and Africa will make good preparations for the deliverables of the meeting to upgrade and enhance their cooperation.
China will strengthen health cooperation with Africa to jointly curb coronavirus. China is prepared to help Africa on disease prevention and build a healthy Africa. China will also strengthen industrial capacity cooperation with Africa, promote clustering and synergy of cooperation projects and make them more advanced in industrial operations and more locally based.
China is prepared to help Africa enhance its home-grown production capacity in a joint effort to build a strong African manufacturer. China will strengthen cooperation with Africa on regional connectivity, and explore free trade cooperation with Africa.
China is prepared to help Africa increase its infrastructure, trade and financial connectivity, in a joint effort to build a connected Africa. It will strengthen agricultural cooperation with Africa, including food production, storage and transportation.
China is prepared to help Africa enhance food security, in a joint effort to have bumper harvest. China will strengthen digital cooperation with Africa. With its technological strengths, China is prepared to help Africa utilise the opportunities of ICT revolution in a joint effort to build a digital Africa.
China will strengthen environmental cooperation with Africa in the pursuit of sustainable development. China is prepared to help Africa on climate change response in a joint effort to build a green Africa. It will also strengthen military and security cooperation with Africa and promote political settlement of hot spot issues in Africa.
China is prepared to help Africa enhance peacekeeping and counter-terrorism capacity in a joint effort to build a secure Africa.
Wang Yi expressed his confidence that with joint efforts of China and African countries, FOCAC cooperation would continue producing fruitful outcomes and make still bigger contributions to an even closer China-Africa community with a shared future.