FOCAC promotes growth of China-Tanzania cooperation in depth and substance

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By Chen Mingjian

On November 29 and 30 of this year, the Eighth Ministerial Conference of the Forum on China-Africa Cooperation (FOCAC) will be held in Dakar, capital of Senegal. This is another great event for Sino-African solidarity and cooperation. Under the theme “Deepening China-Africa Partnership and Promoting Sustainable Development to Build a China-Africa Community with a Common Future in the New Era,” representatives from China and African countries will meet to make a comprehensive assessment of the implementation of the results of the Beijing Summit of FOCAC in 2018 and Sino-African solidarity in the fight against the COVID-19 pandemic.

FOCAC is an important mechanism for collective dialogue between China and Africa and a key platform for promoting practical cooperation between the two sides. Since its creation in 2000, FOCAC has become a fine example of South-South cooperation and a banner of international cooperation with Africa. Over the past 21 years, the China-Africa relationship has shifted from “new type of partnership” to “new type of strategic partnership” and “comprehensive strategic and cooperative partnership” at present. Since 2000, the volume of Sino-African trade and China’s FDI in Africa have increased by 20 times and 100 times, respectively. China has been Africa’s largest trading partner for 12 consecutive years, and the stock of Chinese companies’ direct investment in Africa has exceeded $ 56 billion.

In September 2018, the FOCAC Beijing Summit was held with grandeur, during which Chinese and African leaders reached consensus on building an even stronger China-Africa community of destiny. After that, China and Africa jointly promoted the implementation of the summit results, especially the “Eight Big Initiatives”.

Faced with the unexpected COVID-19 pandemic, China and Africa have supported each other to overcome the difficulties and encouraged the development of their cooperation, which goes against the international trend of declining trade and investment , and demonstrates the great resilience and vitality of bilateral cooperation. In the past three years, China and Africa have successfully organized such important events as the China-Africa Economic and Trade Expo and the Forum on China-Africa Cooperation in Agriculture. In addition, the China-Africa Institute, the China-Africa Environmental Cooperation Center and 14 Luban workshops have been established. In the first seven months of this year, Sino-African trade volume reached $ 139.1 billion, registering an annual growth of 40.5%, and China’s direct investment in Africa reached 2.96 billion dollars, exceeding the level before the pandemic. from 2019.

The Sino-African friendship has continued to grow stronger in their solidarity against the COVID-19 pandemic. When China was in its most difficult time in the fight against the virus, the African brothers gave support in various forms to China, while after the COVID-19 epidemic in Africa, China took the lead. initiative to provide assistance, including sending expert teams to 17 African countries. countries, donating anti-epidemic supplies to all African members of FOCAC and providing vaccines to more than 50 African countries and the African Union through aid and export. China’s strong support in this regard has been widely welcomed by African countries.

Tanzania has actively participated in FOCAC activities and has supported the establishment and development of the forum for the past 21 years. China and Tanzania have maintained strategic communication within the framework of FOCAC, deepened their mutually beneficial cooperation and encouraged the implementation of the relevant outcomes of all previous FOCAC conferences, thus giving a constant impetus to China’s common development and from Tanzania.

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The volume of trade between China and Tanzania has increased nearly 50-fold, from less than US $ 100 million in 2000 to US $ 4.58 billion in 2020. The cumulative investment of Chinese companies in Tanzania has increased exceeded US $ 7 billion, with more than 700 investment projects. China has been Tanzania’s largest trading partner and the largest source of foreign investment for several consecutive years. The Julius Nyerere International Convention Center (JNICC), the University of Dar es Salaam Library and the Jakaya Kikwete Cardiac Institute (JKCI) built with China’s help have become iconic new projects of the Sino-Tanzanian friendship .

The infrastructure projects undertaken by Chinese companies, such as the Fifth Section of the Standard Gauge Railway (SGR) and the extension and renovation of the port of Dar es Salaam, and the China production capacity cooperation projects -Tanzania, such as the acquisition of Maweni Limestone Ltd. by Huaxin Cement, all progressing steadily. In addition, China has resolutely supported Tanzania in the fight against the COVID-19 pandemic. It is providing a total number of nearly 3.5 million doses of COVID-19 vaccines to Tanzania.

As the world faces global changes and a pandemic, both on a scale unprecedented in a century, the importance of China-Africa solidarity and cooperation has become more evident. By upholding the principles of sincerity and friendliness, equality and mutual respect, efficiency and pragmatism, and mutual benefit and win-win results, the forthcoming Eighth Ministerial Conference of FOCAC will establish a new consensus and instill a new impetus for the common development of China and Africa. .

China plans to announce targeted cooperation measures in key areas, such as infrastructure, healthcare, climate change and digital economy, to promote the transformation and modernization of China-Africa cooperation and improve its quality and efficiency. China stands ready to establish close communication with Tanzania and work with it to generate more fruit under the Belt and Road Initiative (BRI) and FOCAC, to elevate the comprehensive cooperative partnership. China-Tanzania to a new high.

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