Strengthening the Five Pillars of China-Africa Cooperation

Published on 8th August 2016

The world is experiencing unprecedented transformation. The global economy is undergoing profound adjustment, the international landscape and order are evolving at a faster pace and the trend toward a multipolar world faces new challenges. However, peace and development remain the dominant theme of the times and the rise of developing countries' collective strength and influence has not and will not falter. The 21st century is not only a century for China and Asia, but also one for Africa. Joining hands, the 2.4 billion Chinese and African people will show the world our strong determination to promote solidarity through cooperation and pursue win-win outcomes through development. This will further enhance the overall strength of China, Africa and developing countries as a whole and mark an important contribution to building the new type of international relations featuring win-win cooperation. The solidarity and cooperation between China and Africa not only bears on our own future and destiny, but will have a far-reaching impact on global peace and development and the evolution of the international landscape.

China is implementing its 13th Five-Year Plan and working to realize the "two centenary goals" and the Chinese Dream of great national renewal. China will remain committed to the path of peaceful development and calls for common commitment to such a path, so that together we could build a community of shared future and interests for all mankind.

The commitment of African countries toward seeking strength from unity and to African integration has gathered irreversible momentum. Agenda 2063, a blueprint for Africa's development, has been drawn and industrialization and modernization have become the common goals of African countries.

In this new era, China and Africa face golden opportunities. Our development strategies are highly compatible, we each have distinct advantages, and we need each other for our cooperative development. China will continue to abide by the principles of sincerity, practical results, affinity and good faith, uphold the values of friendship, justice and shared interests. We will work with Africa to strengthen the five pillars of China-Africa cooperation and push forward our comprehensive strategic and cooperative partnership. To this end, I would like to suggest the following:

First, to forever remain good brothers sharing weal and woe, we must provide greater political guidance for our relationship. This year marks the 60th anniversary of diplomatic relations between China and Africa. Through six decades, China and Africa have forged ahead in both good and difficult times. China-Africa relations have stood the test of time and international vicissitudes. We need to carry on this proud tradition, maintain the sound momentum of high-level exchanges, share experience of national governance, enhance mutual understanding and support for each other's core interests and major concerns, and firmly uphold our common interests. African countries have voiced support for China's just position on the South China Sea issue and rendered invaluable political support to the Chinese side. It is greatly valued and appreciated by China!

Second, to forever remain good partners for common development, we must improve mutually beneficial cooperation. We should seize the historic opportunity of synergizing the development strategies of China and Africa, prioritize industrialization and agricultural modernization with a focus on production capacity cooperation and industrial partnership, deepen our mutually beneficial cooperation on industry, agriculture, infrastructure development, human resources development, investment, trade, financial services and so on to bring greater benefit to our people. China will pursue common, intensive, green, safe and open development together with Africa, and make sure that the cooperation projects in Africa will generate economic and social benefits and meet the standard of sustainable development. We will plan and implement major infrastructure projects in tandem with industrial cooperation and development in Africa, work to transform and upgrade China-Africa cooperation, support Africa's accelerated industrialization and agricultural modernization, and help Africa realize independent and sustainable development.

Third, to forever remain good friends of one heart and mind, we must increase inter-civilization exchanges. We should strengthen people-to-people cooperation in such areas as health, education, culture, science and technology, tourism and sports. We need to expand exchanges and visits between youth, women, civil society, media and academia so as to promote mutual learning between the two civilizations, boost mutual understanding and appreciation between the Chinese and African people, pass China-Africa friendship from generation to generation and secure stronger public support for China-Africa friendship.

Fourth, to forever remain guardians of peace and stability, we must strengthen security cooperation. China firmly supports African countries in addressing African problems in African ways and in seeking political solution to internal differences through dialogue and consultation. China will continue to take a constructive part in African peace and security affairs, help African countries and the AU build capacity for peacekeeping, maintaining stability and countering terrorism, and support African countries in enhancing law-enforcement capacity from border control, army and police to customs and taxation. We will take an active part in UN peacekeeping operations in Africa and contribute more to Africa's peace and development.

Fifth, to forever remain protectors of our common interests, we must broaden cooperation in international affairs. China has similar positions and common interests with Africa on major international and regional issues. We need to firmly uphold the purposes and principles of the UN Charter, jointly work for a more just and equitable international order, and oppose the practice of the strong bullying the weak or wanton interference in other countries' internal affairs. China and Africa should strengthen communication, coordination and cooperation on UN reform, climate change, food security, poverty reduction, development and other global issues so as to safeguard the common interests of developing countries.

The curtain has been drawn on a new era of China-Africa win-win and cooperative development. Let us build on the success of this coordinators' meeting, work in a concerted, down-to-earth and innovative fashion, meet each other half way, strive for early and satisfactory delivery of the outcomes of the Johannesburg Summit, and bring greater benefits to the people of China and Africa.

By Yang Jiechi

State Councilor, The Peoples Republic of China.

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