President Xi Jinping announced Saturday that leaders attending a major
summit here have reached consensus on lifting China-Africa relations to
a comprehensive strategic cooperative partnership.
Xi, who proposed the upgrade one day earlier at the opening session of
the second summit of the Forum on China-Africa Cooperation (FOCAC), made
the announcement before the landmark two-day gathering draws to an end.
Johannesburg declaration, action plan
The summit, attended by Xi and heads of state and government and
representatives from about 50 African countries, adopted a declaration
and an action plan for cooperation in the coming three years.
The two documents, Xi said, represent an all-round planning for future
development of China-Africa relations and pragmatic cooperation in
Xi said the two documents would inject fresh impetus into the
comprehensive development of China-Africa relations, and provide strong
guidance and political guarantee for the two sides to conduct
mutually-beneficial cooperation in more areas and on higher levels.
The two documents, he added, are guidelines to the development of
China-Africa relations, and were achieved through equal and friendly
negotiations between China and Africa.
The two documents made clear the future development goals and missions
for the two sides’ relations, and proposed major measures for win-win
cooperation and hand-in-hand development.
Five pillars, 10 plans
The Chinese president also reaffirmed the importance of the five major
pillars he highlighted a day earlier that China and African countries
should focus on.
The five pillars include consolidating political mutual trust,
striving for win-win economic cooperation, enhancing exchanges and
learning from each other’s cultures, helping each other in security, and
cementing unity and coordination on international affairs.
To realize the upgrade of relations, Xi said leaders at the meeting
have been determined to push forward the all-round development of
China-Africa relations by focusing on implementing 10 major cooperation
plans covering the areas of industrialization, agricultural
modernization, infrastructure, financial services, green development,
trade and investment facilitation, poverty reduction, public health,
people-to-people exchanges, and peace and security.
Xi summed up China-Africa relations by saying the two sides should
maintain equality, mutual trust and support for each other no matter how
the international situation changes, and uphold the principle of win-win
cooperation for common development no matter how volatile the economic
China and Africa should also adhere to the spirit of coordination
featuring mutual understanding and common progress no matter how much
the times have changed, and be committed to standing side by side in all
weathers no matter how severe the challenges are, he noted.
South African President Jacob Zuma, who co-chaired the summit with Xi,
said in his closing remarks that the principles underlying the FOCAC
partnership are "sincerity, mutual trust, equality, win-win cooperation,
and mutual benefit."
The theme of the summit, Africa-China Progressing Together: Win-Win
Cooperation for Common Development, was most appropriate, concluded Zuma,
noting that Africa and China want to "prosper together."
I’d like to sincerely thank President Xi, for his immense contribution
in making this partnership successful, and for his commitment to taking
the relationship with Africa to its highest level ever, he said.
Other African leaders also spoke highly of the declaration and action
plan adopted at the summit, vowing to utilize the opportunities
presented at the meeting to push forward Africa’s industrialization and
The leaders said they are willing to actively participate in the
China-proposed Belt and Road Initiative, enhance security cooperation,
and speak with one voice in the international arena, so as to safeguard
common interest and face common challenges.
The Johannesburg summit is the second of its kind under the
15-year-old framework of the FOCAC, which groups China, 50 African
countries that have established diplomatic ties with China, and the
Commission of the African Union.