Premier Li Keqiang (L) holds talks with Ethiopian Prime Minister Hailemariam Desalegn in Beijing, capital of China, June 13, 2013.[Photo by Ma Zhancheng/Xinhua]
BEIJING -- Premier Li Keqiang on June 13 held talks with Ethiopian Prime Minister Hailemariam Desalegn on boosting bilateral ties.
Li reviewed the smooth growth of China-Ethiopia relations since the two countries forged diplomatic relations in 1970, citing fruitful cooperation in various sectors.
Both China and Ethiopia are committed to developing their economies and improving people’s livelihood, thus the two countries boast huge potential for cooperation, Li said.
Noting this year marks the 10th anniversary of the China-Ethiopia all-round cooperative partnership, Li said China would like to work with the African nation to bring bilateral cooperation to a new high.
The Chinese government supports firms with capabilities to work with Ethiopia in infrastructure, energy, resources, industrial parks, manufacturing and agriculture, Li said, urging the African country to continue to formulate preferential policies and improve the environment for investment.
The premier also called for stronger bilateral cooperation in culture, education, tourism and more communication on international and regional issues of importance, including reform of the United Nations Security Council, Somali and the Sudan-South Sudan issue.
Stressing Africa is a trustworthy friend and partner of China, Li reviewed the progress of cooperation between the country and the continent.
No strings are attached to China’s aid to Africa and Chinese firms and citizens are required to follow local laws and customs, Li said.
The premier called on African countries to protect the legitimate interests of Chinese firms and citizens and properly deal with problems through consultations.
China will continue to support Africa’s peace, development and integration, help the continent’s countries increase their development capabilities and make the China-Africa cooperation benefit the two peoples, Li said.
Li expected Ethiopia, the rotating chair of the African Union, to play a constructive role in boosting China-Africa relations.
Desalegn thanked China for its all-round support to Ethiopia in its fight against colonization and in its development.
Desalegn underscored Ethiopia’s commitment to deepening cooperation with China in all fields, welcoming firms to invest in the country and pledging to protect Chinese interests.
Desalegn hailed China’s important role in boosting African peace, stability and development, saying Ethiopia will make efforts for bigger development of Africa-China relations.
The Ethiopian Prime Minister arrived in Beijing on June 12 for a four-day visit. He will meet with President Xi Jinping on June 14.