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China vows to deepen ties with African Union

Updated: Feb 10,2015 8:56 AM     Xinhua

Zimbabwean President Robert Mugabe (L) meets State Councilor Yang Jiechi in Harare, capital of Zimbabwe on Feb 9.[Photo/Xinhua

HARARE — China will deepen mutually beneficial ties with the African Union (AU), a senior Chinese official said in Harare, capital of Zimbabwe on Feb 9.

After meeting Zimbabwean President Robert Mugabe who assumed the AU chairmanship in January, Chinese State Councilor Yang Jiechi told reporters that China was keen to further engage with the AU for greater bilateral socio-economic benefits.

Expressing optimism about China-Africa relations, Yang described the ties as an exemplar of mutual trust, equality and concerted efforts for win-win cooperation, adding the relationship enjoyed great prospects.

“China will continue its mutually beneficial cooperation with the AU. We are well connected with the AU and all its members and we believe that there is a lot more that we can discuss in terms of economic and social progress in collaboration with each other,” Yang said.

He said China paid great attention to Africa’s development efforts, including its 50-year development strategy dubbed Agenda 2063.

“We think that it is a very ambitious program and it will materialize given the resourcefulness of African people, the strategic vision of African leaders and the many friends that Africa has in the world with one of them being China,” he said.

On China-Zimbabwe relations, Yang hailed the fraternal political and socio-economic ties between the two countries, noting that cooperation still needed to be enhanced in such areas as agriculture, energy, infrastructure, human resources training and tourism sectors, among others.

China valued the backing of Zimbabwe on issues that concern its core interests and also affirmed its support for Zimbabwe’s efforts to safeguard its independence, sovereignty and dignity, he said.

“We believe that each country has the right to choose its own path of development,” he said.

Yang, who is on a three-day official visit to the southern African country, said he agreed with Mugabe that much progress had been made in implementing consensus between Zimbabwe and China on various cooperation agreements signed by the two leaders in 2014.

“China is ready to work with Zimbabwe to further deepen their political mutual trust and expand their cooperation in various areas,” he said.

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