China to implement objectives of cooperation programs with Africa

Chinese State Councilor and Foreign Minister Wang Yi attends a press conference on China’s foreign policy and foreign relations via video link on the sidelines of the fifth session of the 13th National People’s Congress (NPC) at the Great Hall of the People in Beijing, capital of China, March 7, 2022. /Xinhua

By CGTN

Later in 2022, China will begin implementing the deliverables of the nine programs of cooperation with Africa set out by President Xi Jinping at the Eighth Ministerial Conference of the Forum on China-Africa Cooperation (FOCAC) in November.

Chinese Foreign Minister Wang Yi reaffirmed China’s position during a media briefing on China’s foreign policy and diplomatic relations on Monday.

The nine programs of Africa-China cooperation for the next three years are geared towards adding new impetus to the growth of China-Africa relations. According to Wang Yi, China will begin by working on three priorities with African countries.

First, China will “vigorously advance” its anti-COVID-19 cooperation with Africa by fully providing one billion doses of vaccines to Africa and help the continent enhance its capacity for localized vaccine production.

Africa, which has the lowest vaccination rate globally, aims to vaccinate 60 percent of its population by the end of this year.

Of the one billion doses, 600 million doses are to be donated and 400 million doses will be provided through various avenues, such as joint production by Chinese companies and relevant African countries.

China is also expected to undertake 10 medical and health projects for African countries, in addition to sending 1,500 medical personnel and public health experts to Africa.

Wang Yi also said China will upgrade practical China-Africa cooperation by accelerating Belt and Road cooperation and work for early harvests under the nine programs spelled out by President Xi Jinping.

“We will synergize the Global Development Initiative (GDI) with the African Union’s Agenda 2063 and take concrete actions to support economic recovery and sustainable development of Africa.”

China will also act on the outlook for peace and development in the Horn of Africa. As part of its peace and security program, China vowed to support African countries’ efforts to independently maintain regional security and fight terrorism and deliver military assistance to the African Union (AU).

Having appointed a special envoy to the region, Wang Yi said China was prepared to engage in “extensive communications” with regional countries and play a “constructive role” in helping secure peace in the region and continent in general.

Wang Yi also robustly refuted accusations of China leading Africa into a so-called “debt trap” by laying out the development record in the China-Africa cooperation.

Wang Yi said China has built 10,000km of railways, up to 100,000km of highways, close to 100 ports and several schools and hospitals across the continent.

These, he added, are “monuments of cooperation” and not debt-traps.

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