Chinese Premier Wen Jiabao on
Saturday embarks on a seven-nation African tour to Egypt, Ghana, the Republic of
Congo, Angola, South Africa, Tanzania and Uganda, highlighting the position of
Africa in China's diplomatic strategy.
China-Africa relations have witnessed a continuous heating-up this year.
Wen's visit will be China's another important action in its diplomacy toward
Africa following visits of Chinese Foreign Minister Li Zhaoxing and President Hu
Jintao to the continent in January and April, said Chinese Foreign Ministry
spokeswoman Jiang Yu on Thursday.
Experts on China-Africa relations believe that the "African heat" in China's
diplomacy reflects China's increasing attention on this continent and its will
to expand and deepen the bilateral relations.
China's "African heat" is not all of a sudden but a continuous stance in
fostering traditional friendship, said Xu Weizhong, an expert with the China
Institute of Contemporary International Relations.
The Chinese government issues its first-ever African policy paper early this
year, putting forward its proposals for all-round cooperation with Africa in
various fields in the coming years.
China and African countries enjoy an extensive and solid foundation for
friendly cooperation with 47 out of 53 African countries having established
diplomatic relations with China.
China and African countries need to cooperate with each other as the
advantages of the two sides are complementary, Xu said.
Africa has abundant resources, broad markets and pressing desire to develop
its economy, while China has much experience gained through its reform and
opening-up drive as well as practicable technologies and products, Xu said.
Wang Hongyi, another scholar on African studies with China Institute of
International Studies, said it is important to strengthen China-Africa
cooperation under the situation of economic globalization as China and African
countries all face the challenge of development.
Wang said, Africa is an indispensable partner of China and the two sides need
mutual support in dealing with international affairs.
Energy is an important part of China's cooperation with Africa. "Some people
think that energy, the import of oil, is China's sole purpose in developing
economic ties with Africa. This view is erroneous and one-sided," said He Yafei,
Chinese assistant foreign minister, at a news briefing last Friday.
China and Africa have very comprehensive economic and trade ties. Trade
volume between China and Africa reached more than 37 billion U.S.dollars in
2005, a rise of 35 percent from a year earlier and almost four times higher than
in 2001. And China has so far launched over 900 aid projects in Africa.
In exploiting resources in Africa, Xu said, China attaches importance to the
diversification of resources exploration so as to facilitate Africa's