China, Angola elevate bilateral ties

2024-03-16 Editor : Li Yan ECNS App Download
President Xi Jinping meets on Friday with Angolan President Joao Lourenco in Beijing. (Feng Yongbin / CHINA DAILY)

President Xi Jinping meets on Friday with Angolan President Joao Lourenco in Beijing. (Feng Yongbin / CHINA DAILY)

China and Angola announced the elevation of bilateral ties to a comprehensive strategic partnership on Friday, as both nations agreed to a slew of measures to bolster political mutual trust and build up pragmatic cooperation.

The announcement was made as President Xi Jinping hosted Angolan President Joao Lourenco, who is making his second visit to China in six years, at the Great Hall of the People in Beijing, after a welcoming ceremony that included a guard of honor and a 21-gun salute.

According to a joint statement released by the two nations, both sides agreed to steps on jointly building a community with a shared future for mankind, promoting the high-quality building of the Belt and Road, and implementing the Global Development Initiative, Global Security Initiative and Global Civilization Initiative.

Xi told his guest that cooperation between China and Angola, as part of South-South cooperation, represents mutual help between good friends, which is mutually beneficial and win-win by nature.

"In the face of a global landscape fraught with changes and turbulence, China and Angola should continue to move forward, firmly support each other, share development achievements, and enhance the level of friendly cooperation," he said.

The president pledged support for Angola in safeguarding its national sovereignty, security and development interests, exploring a modernization path suitable for its national conditions, and realizing national development and rejuvenation.

He underlined the solid foundation, large scale and strong complementarity of cooperation between both nations, and highlighted the huge potential and bright prospects for mutually beneficial cooperation.

According to the General Administration of Customs, the total trade volume between China and Angola reached $23 billion in 2023. China mainly imports crude oil from Angola and exports electromechanical and steel products and footwear to Angola. China has granted Angola zero-tariff treatment for 98 percent of its exported product categories to the nation.

Xi highlighted Beijing's readiness to ensure the sound implementation of key infrastructure projects in Angola, saying that the nation will support capable Chinese enterprises in conducting various forms of cooperation in Angola to aid the African nation's agricultural modernization, industrialization and economic diversification.

He expressed the hope that Angola can take stronger measures to protect the legal rights and safety of Chinese citizens and enterprises. According to the Foreign Ministry, there are over 100 Chinese State-owned and private enterprises operating in Angola, with approximately 30,000 Chinese citizens in the country.

Xi stressed that China welcomes the inflow of more high-quality products from Angola, including through platforms such as the China International Import Expo and the China-Africa Economic and Trade Expo.

The nation will continue to ensure the sound implementation of projects such as sending medical teams to Angola, offering scholarships to Angolan students and enhancing cultural exchanges and people-to-people friendship, he added.

The president noted that the collective rise of developing countries is unstoppable, and the Global South should not be absent from global governance or development and prosperity.

China supports African countries and the African Union in solving African problems in African ways and maintaining regional peace and stability, and is willing to strengthen multilateral coordination with Angola and other African countries to protect the common interests of developing countries, Xi added.

Lourenco, who is making a three-day visit to China, emphasized that his country firmly adheres to the one-China policy, and believes that Taiwan is an inalienable part of China and the Taiwan question will be successfully resolved.

According to his social media account, the Angolan president will also take part in a business forum with Chinese business leaders and visit Shandong province.

Premier Li Qiang and Zhao Leji, chairman of the Standing Committee of the National People's Congress, also met with the Angolan president, respectively, on Friday.

Yang Baorong, a researcher at the Chinese Academy of Social Sciences' Institute of West-Asian and African Studies, said that China and Angola, which is a nation rich in oil and mineral resources, have conducted highly fruitful cooperation in the area of crude oil and infrastructure development.

"The growing presence of Chinese companies has helped Angola extend the value chain of its rich natural resources," he said, citing the example of the oil refinery being built in Angola by China National Chemical Engineering Co.

He added that stronger cooperation with China will help Angola develop its infrastructure, solve its financing challenges and create more jobs.


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