World / FOCAC

China, Africa ready for 'new highlights': Xi

(Xinhua) Updated: 2015-12-04 07:20

China, Africa ready for 'new highlights': Xi

Chinese President Xi Jinping (R) meets with African Union Commission (AUC) Chairperson Nkosazana Dlamini-Zuma in Pretoria, South Africa, Dec 3, 2015. [Photo/Xinhua]

JOHANNESBURG - Chinese President Xi Jinping said here Thursday that his country stands ready to work with Africa to tap the unique advantages of their partnership and boost bilateral cooperation for the benefit of both peoples.

Africa is a continent the Chinese people is both familiar with and fond of, Xi said at a welcoming banquet for the dozens of leaders to participate in the second summit of the 15-year-old Forum on China-Africa Cooperation (FOCAC).

It is not only endowed with a long and splendid history but blessed with a great prospect of dynamic development, said the Chinese president, who traveled to Africa in his first foreign trip after taking office in March 2013 and once called the tract of vibrant land "the continent of hope and promise."

Pointing out that similar historical experiences and a shared aspiration for common development have generated a natural affinity between the Chinese and the African people, Xi stressed that it is a shared responsibility of both sides to maintain and strengthen the time-honored friendship.

Both the Chinese and the African people are striving for their respective dreams, and the two sides, with their development strategies highly compatible, have both the need and the resources to expand cooperation for common development, Xi said.

China, he said, is ready to join hands with African countries to give full play to the unique advantages of political mutual trust and economic complementarity in the China-Africa relationship and further promote bilateral win-win cooperation.

He suggested that China and Africa make joint efforts to translate their friendly ties into fresh impetus for the pursuit of cooperation and development, and transform Africa's rich natural and human resources into greater strength for economic development and more benefits for the people.

South African President Jacob Zuma, who also addressed the jubilant gathering, said that Africa and China have a unique strategic partnership and that the FOCAC summit is set to lift bilateral relations to a higher level.

Citing a Chinese proverb, he urged participating leaders to make a concerted endeavor to make a success of the event and consolidate the foundation for further deepening Africa-China cooperation in the future.

Xi and his wife, Peng Liyuan, greeted participating leaders and their spouses before the start of the banquet, which took place at the Sandton Convention Center.

Xi traveled to Johannesburg, the largest city in South Africa, earlier in the day after wrapping up his second state visit to the African country in Pretoria. His schedule here is also packed with a series of meetings with African leaders.

South Africa is the last leg of Xi's ongoing three-nation tour, which has taken him to Paris for the opening ceremony of a highly anticipated UN climate change conference and Zimbabwe for his first state visit to the all-weather friendly country.

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