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Hu: Developing world in key role
(China Daily)
Updated: 2004-02-04 23:06

China is a "reliable friend" to developing countries, said President Hu Jintao.

Hu gave his second speech on China's policy towards developing countries yesterday during an official visit.

"The cornerstone of Chinese foreign policy is to consolidate and accelerate solidarity and co-operation between China and developing countries," said Hu at a banquet hosted by his Algerian counterpart Abdelaziz Bouteflika.

The trip to Algeria is the last leg of Hu's latest trip abroad. He has also visited France, Egypt and Gabon.

Algeria was chosen as a stop on Hu's tour of Africa because of "its significant role in the region and its great influence among developing countries," said an official source with the Chinese delegation.

In his speech, Hu said that developing nations, whose population account for 90 per cent of the world,make up 84 per cent of United Nations member states.

As such, they play an important role in international affairs, particularly in building a fair and rational new international political and economic order.

"World peace depends on stability in developing countries. Its prosperity presupposes the revitalization of developing countries," said the president of the largest developing country in the world.

Hu said that countries, big or small, strong or weak, rich or poor, should be equal. He stressed that developing countries have can choose their own political systems and development modes.

The differences and contradictions between nations should be settled through dialogue and co-operation rather than confrontation or coercion.

The speech was Hu's second clear statement on China's policy towards developing countries since he took the position last March.

Last June, he spoke during an informal leaders' dialogue held in the Alpine resort Evian, where the Group of Eight (G8) industrialized nations convened for its annual meeting.

Hu said countries should tap their potential for economic development and adjust macroeconomic policies towards normal trade order.

This time around, Hu called for developing countries to unite and take effective measures to safeguard their interests in the process of establishing a new international political and economic order.

He added that developed countries should take the interests of developing countries into consideration because they have an unshirkable responsibility to narrow the wealth gap.

"They should provide more market access, promote trade and increase assistance to developing countries," Hu said.

Presidents agree on `new chapter' in ties

President Hu Jintao suggests boosting "strategic co-operation" with Algeria and turning over a "new chapter" in Sino-Algerian relations.

During separate meetings with Algerian leaders including President Abdelaziz Bouteflika, Prime Minister Ahmed Ouyahia, President of the Council of the Nation Abdelkader Bensalah and President of National People's Assembly Karim Younes, Hu praised the two countries' political and economical achievements.

There are four points to Hu's proposal for the development of Sino-Algerian relations.

First, frequent visits by leaders shall direct strategic co-operation.

Second, both countries should strengthen economic and trade ties by exploring oil and natural gas fields, and improving infrastructure construction, communications, agriculture and human resources.

Third, health care, culture, science and technology and education should be strenghtened. More exchanges should be encouraged between the legislatures, political parties, non-governmental organizations and youths of the two countries to help relations.

Fourth, the two countries need to hold more consultations on major international and regional issues, while promoting the democratization of international relations.

Algeria agreed with the Chinese proposal, Bouteflika said, noting his country is willing to keep consolidating friendly ventures in the traditional fields of politics, trade and economy, as well as new areas of agriculture, communications, finance and resources.

Algeria has attached great importance to the visit.

Huge posters of Hu Jintao and Bouteflika adorned the streets of Algiers.

Local residents greeted Chinese visitors in the streets with "how are you" in Chinese and French.

China and Algeria have had diplomatic relations since 1958.

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