Interview: Lesotho king expects higher level of cooperation with China

Source:xinhua 2024-03-18

For the past 30 years, Lesotho and China have enjoyed a very healthy and productive relationship, Letsie III, the King of Lesotho has said, and he hopes the relationship continue to strengthen and grow stronger as time progresses.

This year marks the 30th anniversary of the resumption of diplomatic ties between China and Lesotho. "Under that relationship, as a country, we have benefited a great deal from Chinese assistance and generosity," Letsie III told Xinhua in an interview on Monday at the royal residence Matsieng in capital Maseru.

For example, China has been strongly supporting Lesotho in the infrastructure development, he said, adding that with the help of China, Lesotho has built new roads, hospitals and various projects.

Since 1983, China has completed several aid projects in Lesotho, such as the Lesotho National Library, Manthabiseng Convention Center, the Parliament building, the Phase I of the Mafeteng Solar Power Plant Project, and technical cooperation projects such as vegetable planting, biogas technical guidance, and Juncao planting. China has also provided food aid to Lesotho on many occasions.

Letsie III highly appreciated China's proposals such as the Initiative on Supporting Africa's Industrialization, the Plan for China Supporting Africa's Agricultural Modernization, and the Plan for China-Africa Cooperation on Talent Development.

Regarding the cooperation in industrialization between the two nations, Letsie III hopes more Chinese companies invest in Lesotho so as to strengthen private sectors. "So that the private sector can play its meaningful role as a development engine to the economy, and also create jobs," he said.

Letsie III attached great importance to food security during the interview. He highlighted China's contribution in the agricultural sector in Lesotho over the past years, hoping the two countries can work together to find ways of expanding the programs in agriculture.

"I believe that (with China's help) we can achieve greater food security and greater nutrition security. Many Basotho (Lesotho people) would very much be appreciative of that," he said.

Speaking of the talent development, Letsie III noted that in the last 30 years, there were a lot of Basotho studying in China, and more and more Basotho are getting interested in the ancient and rich Chinese culture.

"We hope that trend will continue," he said, "we also hope that through interactions of this nature, more and more Chinese people will learn about our culture and our history."

Letsie III said that Lesotho has always adhered to the one-China policy and will continue to support China in playing a more active role on the international stage, which is in the interest of all people.

"This is mutually beneficial cooperation, and we hope that we can maintain that characteristic so that both Basotho and Chinese people can benefit from this relationship," said the king.


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