China-Africa ties have been reinvigorated with a milestone dialogue event co-chaired on Thursday by the BRICS member countries of China and South Africa, which were also attending the 15th BRICS Summit here this week.
At the China-Africa Leaders’ Dialogue on Thursday, China unveiled a host of new initiatives and plans to help the continent with economic integration and modernization, rolling out a heartening picture for the future of the Global South.
Such measures as the Initiative on Supporting Africa’s Industrialization, the Plan for China Supporting Africa’s Agricultural Modernization, and the Plan for China-Africa Cooperation on Talent Development are on track to assist Africa in transforming the manufacturing sector, delivering food self-sufficiency and training high-caliber talents.
The latest pledge from China reaffirms the country’s long-term commitment to promoting stability, development and prosperity of the continent and the wellbeing of the African people.
The industrial initiative stressed that through the nine programs under the Forum on China-Africa Cooperation, as well as cooperation under the Belt and Road Initiative and the Global Development Initiative, China will channel more resources of assistance, investment and financing amid a push for industrialization.
The agricultural plan indicated that China will help Africa expand grain plantation and encourage Chinese companies to increase agricultural investment in Africa. It aims to help Africa achieve food self-sufficiency and independent sustainable development, promote food production in Africa, effectively boost Africa’s ability to safeguard its food security and help it reach related goals in agricultural modernization.
And the talent plan seeks to train 500 principals and high-caliber teachers of vocational colleges every year, and 10,000 technical personnel with both Chinese language and vocational skills for Africa.
All these efforts speak volumes for China’s Africa policy with the principle of sincerity, real results, amity and good faith, of which China has remained a practitioner over the past 10 years.
Booming bilateral economic and trade cooperation also underpins the enduring China-Africa relations that have weathered the vicissitudes of time. China has remained Africa’s largest trading partner over the past decade and the largest export destination for Africa. Official data show that bilateral trade grew 11 percent to 282 billion U.S. dollars in 2022.
The bilateral trade ties continue to enjoy steady growth despite an unbalanced world economic recovery and a sluggish global business environment. Latest data from China’s customs authority showed that trade between China and Africa rose 7.4 percent year-on-year to 1.14 trillion yuan (about 158.36 billion dollars) in the first seven months of this year.
Looking ahead, China will work with Africa to enhance the synergy of their development strategies, and will continue to support Africa in speaking with one voice on international affairs to keep improving its international standing.
As was pledged, China will also work actively at the G20 summit next month to support the African Union to gain full membership in the group, and support making special arrangements for UN Security Council reform to meet Africa’s aspiration as a priority.
The two sides also share a keen aspiration for self-strengthening. China is pursuing the great rejuvenation of the Chinese nation on all fronts through a Chinese path to modernization, while Africa is making all-out efforts to build a new Africa that enjoys peace, unity, prosperity and strength.
Notably, this 15th BRICS Summit in Johannesburg was themed “BRICS and Africa: Partnership for Mutually Accelerated Growth, Sustainable Development and Inclusive Multilateralism.” China and this year’s host country South Africa, both key members of the group, are expected to play pioneering roles to help amplify the voice of the Global South for more balanced development.