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Ministry of Foreign Affairs Holds Briefing for Chinese and Foreign Journalists on visits Premier Li Keqiang Will Pay to Ethiopia, the African Union Headquarters, Nigeria, Angola and Kenya
2014/04/30

On April 30, 2014, Ministry of Foreign Affairs held a briefing for Chinese and foreign journalists on the visits Premier Li Keqiang will pay to Ethiopia, the African Union (AU) Headquarters, Nigeria, Angola and Kenya. Vice Foreign Minister Zhang Ming and Assistant Minister of Commerce Zhang Xiangchen respectively briefed about the visits and answered questions from the journalists present.

First, on the Visits to Ethiopia, the AU Headquarters, Nigeria, Angola and Kenya

Zhang Ming said that Premier Li Keqiang's visit this time is , following President Xi Jinping's visit to Africa last year, another important visit to Africa made by one of the Chinese major leaders. It is as well the first visit to Africa made by the Chinese Premier of the new government. This visit marks the 50th anniversary of the first visit to Africa made by Premier Zhou Enlai, the first Premier of the People's Republic of China. It is of great significance in further promoting traditional China-Africa friendship, upgrading the level of bilateral practical cooperation, deepening the new type of China-Africa strategic partnership, and enriching and developing international cooperation with Africa.

Zhang Ming said that during the visits, Premier Li Keqiang will hold talks and meetings with the state leaders of those African countries and the Chairperson of the African Union Commission (AUC) to conduct an extensive and in-depth exchange of views on topics of common interest. China and Africa will sign around 60 cooperation documents covering various fields of politics, economy, trade, culture, health care, agriculture and personnel training. Both sides will issue joint statements, stating the important consensus reached during the visits. In addition, the Chinese side and the AU side will jointly release two documents: a joint statement and a cooperation outlines for poverty reduction.

During his visit to Ethiopia, Premier Li Keqiang will hold talks with Prime Minister Hailemariam Dessalegn and meet with President Mulatu Teshome. It is believed that this visit will further deepen the traditional China-Ethiopia friendship, keep close exchanges of experience in governance and administration of state affairs, elevate the level of bilateral practical cooperation, and promote China-Ethiopia comprehensive cooperative partnership to a higher level.

During his visit to the AU headquarters, Premier Li Keqiang will meet with Chairperson of the AUC Nkosazana Dlamini Zuma, deliver an important speech to the whole Africa at the AU Conference Center, and put forward China-Africa cooperation framework in the new era. This is the first visit made by the Chinese Premier to the AU headquarters. It is believed that it will further consolidate strategic mutual trust of both sides, comprehensively deepen cooperation in various fields and push forward the China-AU relations and China-Africa relations to a new high.

During his visit to Nigeria, Premier Li Keqiang will hold talks with President Goodluck Jonathan. It is believed that this visit will further cement the traditional China-Nigeria friendship and push forward the development of a closer strategic partnership between the two sides. Premier Li Keqiang will also attend the Plenary Session of the World Economic Forum on Africa in Abuja, and deliver an important speech on strengthening mutually beneficial China-Africa cooperation, fostering inclusive growth of Africa and realizing common development of China and Africa.

During his visit to Angola, Premier Li Keqiang will hold talks with President José Eduardo dos Santos, and will have a discussion with the representatives of Chinese enterprises and citizens based in Angola on the livelihood of the overseas Chinese. It is believed that this visit will elevate the level of bilateral practical cooperation and promote the comprehensive and in-depth development of China-Angola strategic partnership.

During his visit to Kenya, Premier Li Keqiang will hold talks with President Uhuru Kenyatta, and have a group meeting with Executive Directors of the United Nations Environment Programme and Human Settlements Programme. It is believed that this visit will further enhance political mutual trust of the two countries, expand bilateral all-round cooperation, and push China-Kenya friendly cooperative relations to a new high.

Zhang Ming expressed that this visit of Premier Li Keqiang to Africa is of great significance, of rich contents and of fruitful results. It is another major diplomatic action towards Africa the new central leadership of China has adopted under the new circumstances. It has obtained high attention from the four visited countries as well as the AU and the World Economic Forum. With the joint efforts of the Chinese and the African side, this visit will surely achieve complete success and play a proper role in promoting the China-Africa relations to a higher level.

Second, on China-Africa economic and trade cooperation

Zhang Xiangchen pointed out that China and Africa enjoy extraordinary traditional friendship, and that economic and trade cooperation constitutes an important support for the new type of China-Africa strategic partnership. Africa is regarded as a continent of hope and a hot spot of development, and rates among one of the world's fastest growing economies. Common interests between China and Africa have always been expanding. Since 2009, China has become the largest trading partner of Africa for the fifth consecutive year, as well as an important development partner and an emerging investment source of Africa, while Africa has become an important source of imports, the second largest overseas market for project contracting and emerging investment destination of China. By the end of 2013, China's direct investment stock in Africa has reached 25 billion USD, with over 2500 Chinese enterprises investing in Africa.

Zhang Xiangchen introduced that Premier Li Keqiang, during his visit to Africa, will exchange views with leaders of African countries on further deepening bilateral economic and trade cooperation, particularly on how to, under the new situation, continuously innovate ways and expand areas in China-Africa economic and trade cooperation and to accelerate cooperation to improve quality and efficiency and achieve transformation and upgrading. This visit will surely further promote China-Africa economic and trade cooperation to a new high.

Zhang Xiangchen said Premier Li Keqiang's visit will yield fruitful results in economy and trade, which involve both inter-governmental agreements and cooperation projects between financial institutions and enterprises, and encompasses both state-to-state cooperation and regional cooperation. Covering a wide range of cooperation fields and including a large variety of cooperation forms, these fruits boast numerous innovations and highlights, and will fully embody the future direction of China-Africa economic and trade cooperation.

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