|Chinese FM calls for strengthening of new Sino-African strategic partnership|
RABAT, Jan. 11 (Xinhua) -- Chinese Foreign Minister Yang Jiechi, who is on a five-nation African trip, is calling for the strengthening of the new Sino-African partnership "characterized by equality and mutual respect on the political front, a win-win economic cooperation and reciprocal cultural exchanges."
"Let us deepen the new and strategic Sino-African cooperation through reinforcing our cooperation which should be characterized by equality and mutual respect on the political front, a win-win economic cooperation and reciprocal cultural exchanges," Yang said.
The Chinese top diplomat made the comments in an article titled "Pair of Traditional Friendship," which was published on Thursday in a Moroccan newspaper "Le Matin".
"This corresponds to the Chinese and African common and long-term interests and responds to our shared development objective and the mission to be accomplished during this decade," he added.
For the past two decades, Chinese foreign ministers have established a culture of reserving for the African continent their first foreign trips in a year. This is "a non-written Chinese diplomatic tradition which I would like to honor due to its historic significance and reality," Yang explained at the beginning of the article.
"Despite the great development we have achieved in the past years, we are perfectly conscious that China, with 150 million people still living in poverty, remains a developing country and whose roots will forever be in the developing world," the Chinese minister said.
A reinforced cooperation with the African countries and other developing countries "was and will still remain the starting point and the main objective of Chinese foreign affairs policy," he reiterated.
The Sino-African relationship "will henceforth be anchored on a deep sentimental foundation and sound policies," Yang said.
"We are therefore going to work for the construction of a new strategic Sino-African partnership so that our cooperation can be more dynamic and creative in these changing times and bring more real benefits to our people," he noted.
"In the international financial crisis in particular, the Sino-African cooperation managed to surmount the difficulties and indeed accelerated to become the best example of international cooperation in matters of development.
"This might be seen as success between China and Africa but it can also be looked at as south-south success," the Chinese minister said.
This showed "the formidable dynamism and great potential that exists in the cooperation between China, the biggest country in the developing world and Africa, the continent bringing together the highest number of countries in the developing world," he pointed out.
At the beginning of the 21st century, China and Africa, having realized that they are facing global challenges, came together to form a south-south cooperation arrangement named the Forum on China-Africa Cooperation (FOCAC) in late 2006, which is a very important platform for collective dialogue with effective mechanisms for promoting pragmatic China-Africa cooperation, Yang said.
FOCAC has since been growing with the Sino-African relations progressing to take bilateral cooperation to a higher level in vast and diverse areas. The fourth FOCAC ministerial conference held in November 2009 in Egypt was considered as a new mutual and beneficial forum between China and Africa, "dominated by the willingness to consolidate the friendship, deepen cooperation, fight challenges together and achieve shared development," said the Chinese minister.
Chinese Premier Wen Jiabao, on behalf of the Chinese government,announced on that occasion eight new measures aimed at promoting the pragmatic Sino-African cooperation, he emphasized.
These measures included, among others, the fight against climate change, intensification of technical-scientific cooperation, reinforcement of African financial capacities and increased access of African products to the Chinese market, Yang said.
"One of the main objectives of my present visit to Africa is todemonstrate the sincerity of the Chinese government and to decide on the ground together with the African countries concrete actionsto be taken in older to offer the African people the fruits of theFOCAC conference," the Chinese minister noted.
Yang is making his third tour of Africa in his capacity as the Chinese foreign minister. Yang's visits to Kenya, Nigeria, Sierra Leone, Algeria and Morocco were scheduled for Jan. 6-12.