DAKAR — The speech by Chinese President Xi Jinping at the opening ceremony of the Eighth Ministerial Conference of the Forum on China-Africa Cooperation (FOCAC) on Monday is significant and draws blueprints for the development of China-Africa relations, Chinese State Councilor and Foreign Minister Wang Yi said here.
Speaking to Chinese press as the FOCAC conference concluded, Wang called the event another gathering of the big, friendly family of China and Africa since the Beijing Summit of FOCAC in 2018, the largest entity diplomatic activity abroad jointly organized by China since the outbreak of COVID-19, and China’s another major diplomatic event facing fellow developing countries.
In this conference, President Xi and African leaders jointly discussed the development plan of China and Africa, and guided the future development of China-Africa relations, which is of great significance to deepening China-Africa comprehensive strategic and cooperative partnership, promoting solidarity and cooperation among developing countries and global cooperation in the fight against the COVID-19 pandemic, and making the international order and global governance system more just and equitable, according to the Chinese foreign minister.
President Xi’s important assessments on China-Africa relations and his diplomatic policies and concepts towards African countries, he pointed out, are in line with the core essence of China-Africa friendship and the basic norms of international relations, a true portrayal of an unbreakable and rock-solid “iron-clad” solidarity between China and Africa and a fundamental compliance for China-Africa friendship to be passed down from generation to generation.
Wang said President Xi’s four proposals on building a China-Africa community with a shared future in the new era speak to the common aspirations of the two sides, answer the pressing task, fundamental path and goal of building a China-Africa community with a shared future in the new era, and point out the right direction for the development of China-Africa relations.
In his remarks, President Xi announced that China would provide an additional 1 billion doses of COVID-19 vaccines to Africa.
Wang said this is the largest vaccine aid package for Africa by a single country since the outbreak of the pandemic and a great endeavor in global anti-epidemic cooperation, poised to inject strong impetus into the elimination of the “immunization gap” in Africa and the global fight against COVID-19.
China, the foreign minister stressed, will make full efforts to implement President Xi’s solemn commitment, step up vaccine assistance to Africa, continue to support the exemption of intellectual property rights for vaccines, expand localized vaccine production in Africa, ensure the accessibility and affordability of vaccines in Africa, and take concrete actions to support Africa in defeating the pandemic at an early date.
Wang also said African countries, which are commonly facing economic difficulties due to the pandemic, have high expectations for China-Africa cooperation to boost the continent’s economic recovery, underlining that it has become a strong consensus of both sides to accelerate the upgrading of bilateral cooperation.
The Chinese diplomat, meanwhile, noted President Xi’s quotes that “the world needs true multilateralism” and that “peace, development, equity, justice, democracy and freedom are common values of humanity and represent the abiding aspirations of both China and Africa.”
China, following the guidance of Xi Jinping Thought on Socialism with Chinese Characteristics for a New Era and Xi Jinping Thought on Diplomacy, will continue following the principle of sincerity, real results, amity and good faith and the principle of pursuing the greater good and shared interests, vigorously promote the spirit of China-Africa friendship and cooperation, and fully implement the outcomes of the FOCAC conference, Wang said.
China, he added, will also make new contribution to joint efforts with Africa in defeating the pandemic, enhanced solidarity and cooperation, and the realization of common development, while making unremitting efforts to build a China-Africa community with a shared future in the new era.