The Belt and Road Dialogue for China-Africa Cooperation Held in Addis Ababa

Source:From Chinese Mission to the African Union 2019-06-12

 

The Mission of the People's Republic of China to the African Union and the African Union Commission jointly held the Belt and Road Dialogue for China-Africa Cooperation in Addis Ababa on 30 May. Dignitaries present at the dialogue include Amb. Liu Yuxi, Head of the Chinese Mission to the AU, Amb. Tan Jian, Chinese Ambassador to Ethiopia, Zhai Dongsheng, Director General of the Center for Promoting the Belt and Road Construction under the Chinese National Development and Reform Commission (NDRC), Amani Abou-Zeid, AUC Commissioner for Infrastructure and Energy, Albert Muchanga, AUC Commissioner for Trade and Industry, Raila Odinga, AUC Chairperson's High Representative for Infrastructure Development, Hailemariam Desalegn, former Prime Minister of Ethiopia, Seyoum Mesfin, former Foreign Minister of Ethiopia, Amb. Osama Abdelkalek, Permanent Representative of Egypt to the African Union and Chairperson of the PRC, and representatives from the RECs, diplomatic corps, international organizations, businesses, think tanks and media.

In his keynote speech, Amb. Liu congratulated the AU on the entry into force of the Agreement Establishing the African Continental Free Trade Area, saying China wishes to see Africa make greater achievements on the road to peace and development. He said that the Belt and Road Initiative had received wide-spread attention and attracted active participation of the international community. Africa is an indispensable part of international cooperation under the BRI. China and Africa should strengthen strategic integration through policy consultation, promote inter-connectivity through infrastructure connection, expand opening-up and common win through unimpeded trade, and boost China-Africa cooperation through financial integration, and facilitate inter-civilizational exchanges through people-to-people affinity. He called on all parties to pool wisdom and efforts to expand cooperation based on innovation and market principles, so that cooperation under the BRI progresses on a high-quality path. He encourages Chinese and African businesses to capitalize on the policy dividends and investment opportunities unleashed by the BRI to promote China-Africa reciprocity, win-win and common development.

Director General Zhai Dongsheng briefed on the achievements made at the 2nd Belt and Road Forum for International Cooperation and China's experience of reform and opening-up. He said that China and Africa should strengthen integration of strategic planning, promote trade and investment cooperation, coordinate industrial upgrading and the development of human capital, and expand value-chain cooperation. China welcomes Africa to take part in the BRI and hopes all parties would grasp the important opportunities to jointly construct the Belt and Road.

In their respective speeches, Amani Abou-Zeid, Albert Muchanga, Raila Odinga, Hailemariam Desalegn, Seyoum Mesfin, and Amb. Osama Abdelkalek commended the achievements of Africa-China friendly cooperation, agreed that the BRI highly conforms with Africa's development strategies, boosts Africa's infrastructure development, economic transformation and integration, and provides an important platform for Africa-China cultural and people-to-people exchanges. It will contribute to world peace and prosperity. The AU and African stakeholders support the BRI and will actively participate in Africa-China cooperation under this initiative.

Representatives at the dialogue had in-depth discussions on the topics of trade cooperation, infrastructure and energy cooperation, and the role of businesses in the Belt and Road cooperation. They spoke highly of the dialogue's theme and content, expressed their willingness to make use of the opportunities presented by the BRI to open a new chapter of cooperation to contribute to an open world economy.

On the sidelines of the Dialogue, Amb Liu received a joint interview by some Chinese and African Media including CCTV, CGTN, Ethiopia Broadcasting Corporation, Walta and Moroccan Television.

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