Interview with Chinese Ambassador to Equatorial Guinea

In conversation with, the Ambassador from the People’s Republic of China to Equatorial Guinea, Chen Guoyou, spoke about the aims achieved during the latest Summit of the China-Africa Cooperation Forum.

-In September the Beijing Summit of the China-Africa Cooperation Forum (FOCAC) was successfully held. Can you tell us about the Summit?

The Beijing 2018 Summit of the China-Africa Cooperation Forum came to a close with complete success. Leaders from China and Africa celebrated over 100 events, including the opening ceremony of the summit, the leaders’ round table, the meeting of entrepreneurs, and bilateral talks. The summit achieved a series of agreements of huge importance and significant influences. China and Africa agreed to build a closer community of destiny. African countries are supporting and taking an active role in the joint construction of the Belt and Road. The two sides witnessed the signing of almost 150 agreements on various areas of cooperation. The summit adopted two significant final documents, the Beijing Declaration: Towards a closer China-Africa community of destiny and the Beijing Action Plan of the China-Africa Cooperation Forum (2019-2021), and the launch of over a hundred new measures in order to deepen in an integrated manner the China-Africa cooperation through the implementation of the Eight Actions. The two sides also agreed on the need to adhere to multilateralism, resist unilateral action, and support the central role of the UN. This summit is a historic meeting of the great China-Africa family of friendship, and constitutes a historical monument in the strengthening of China-Africa unity and cooperation for the promotion of a common destiny”.

-You mentioned a series of new measures to deepen China-Africa cooperation such as the Eight Actions. Can you explain the implementation of the Ten Main Cooperation Plans proposed by the FOCAC Johannesburg Summit in 2015? What are the most outstanding aspects of the Eight Actions?

Since the Johannesburg FOCAC Summit in 2015, China has been fully implementing the ten China-Africa cooperation plans defined at the Johannesburg Summit, thanks to which a series of infrastructures including railways, roads, airports, ports and areas of economic-trade areas have been successively built or are in the process of being built, and China-Africa cooperation in matters of peace, security, science and technology, culture, health, the reduction in poverty, social welfare, and the interaction between peoples had been moving towards greater depth, and the financial support provided by China valued at 60 thousand million dollars has been duly used or suitable agreements have been reached regarding its use. The ten cooperation plans have led to fruitful results for the Chinese and Africa people, and they have shown the creative, cohesive and executive capability, both in China and Africa, and have thus taken the China-Africa Strategic Association on Integrated Cooperation to new heights.

During the summit, the President Xi Jinping said that China and Africa should join forces in order to forge a China-Africa community of destiny encompassing shared responsibilities, cooperation and shared benefits, shared joy, the common prosperity of cultures, common security and harmonious living, and should implement as a matter of priority the Eight Actions in industrial promotion, infrastructure connection, the promotion of trade, green development, the construction of capabilities, health, cultural exchange, and peace and security. In order to promote the successful implementation of the eight actions, China, through forms such as government action, investment and financing of financial institutions and companies, will provide Africa with support of up to 60 thousand million dollars, including: 15 thousand dollars of non-returnable aid, interest free credit and preferential loans, 20 thousand million dollars in credit, 10 thousand million dollars for the establishment of a specific fund for financing development, and 5 thousand million on special finance for trade in African imports. Chinese companies will be encouraged to invest no less than 10 thousand million dollars in Africa over the next three years. This series of new measures has been enthusiastically applauded by African countries. The Eight Actions are the greatest highlight of the pragmatic achievements of the Summit, which pay more attention to the development needs of African countries an the general aspirations of Africa peoples, based on the Ten Main Cooperation Plans proposed by the FOCAC Johannesburg Summit, and they further stress the relevance and effectiveness of the cooperation initiatives, inclusion, and the prospective vision of cooperation projects. They not only cover the traditional windows of cooperation between China and Africa, but extend the space for China- Africa cooperation and constitute a more complete cooperation system. The Eight Actions will boost change and an increase in speed for China-Africa cooperation in order to accelerate sustainable development for African countries”.

-What exclusive secrets are there to the continued strengthening and deepening of China-Africa friendship?

-Albert Einstein once said: “The formula for success is X+Y+Z, where x is hard work, Y the correct manner, and Z is not saying useless words”. If it is necessary to speak about exclusive secrets, then the key to lasting relations and fruitful cooperation between China and Africa consist in the four perseverances and the five abstinences.

Over the years, China and Africa, through exchanges and cooperation, have always persevered with sincerity, friendship and treatment based on equality; persevered in valuing both justice and friendship as benefits with the first as a priority; persevered in a practical efficient focus in order to place development at the service of the people; persevered in the opening, the inclusion and the indiscriminate assimilation of all that is positive from what is foreign, taking the road of cooperation and shared benefits with outstanding peculiarities together. China perseveres with the five abstinences in China-Africa cooperation: non interference in African countries in their exploration of development routes in accordance with their national conditions, non-interference in the internal affairs of Africa, no imposition of their own will, no adding of any political condition to the aid for Africa, and no seeking of selfish political aims through investment and financing for the continent. The four perseverances and the five abstinences mentioned above truly reflect the concepts of sincerity, substantial results, affinity and good faith, and a correct concept of justice and interests”.

-H. E. Obiang Nguema Mbasogo, President of the Republic, attended the FOCAC Beijing Summit, and met the Chinese President, H. E. Xi Jinping. What impact did the meeting have?

H. E. Obiang Nguema Mbasogo, during his time at the Beijing Summit of the China-Africa Cooperation Forum, during which he once again met President Xi Jinping, where they both witnessed the signing of documents on bilateral cooperation. The tenth trip by His Excellency to China was a complete success, marked by new heights in the history of China-Equatorial Guinea relations. Both parties will continue in depth exchanges of their experience in the governance of the country and the construction of the governing party, and will continue mutual aid on matters regarding their main interests and concerns. China welcomes Equatorial Guinea participation in the construction of the Belt and Road, support for Chinese companies in their active participation in the construction of infrastructures in Equatorial Guinea, and will deepen exchanges and cooperation in areas of development for human resources, education, health and tourism, among others, and thus help Equatorial Guinea to achieve the goals of the 2020 Plan Horizonte. In this new starting point for China-Equatorial Guinea relations, taking the historic opportunity provided by the FOCAC 2018 Beijing Summit, the Chinese side is willing to work together with the Equatoguinean side in order to successfully implement the significant agreements reached by the two Heads of State, and bring the Association of Integrated Cooperation between China and Equatorial Guinea to fresh heights, attracting more benefits to the two peoples”.

-We know that this year marks the 40th Anniversary of the implementation of the policy of Reform and Opening of China. The successful experience of China should be shared with African countries, including Equatorial Guinea. Faced with an increase in uncertainty, in the current international environment, and unilateralism, and the trend against globalisation, will China continue with Reform and Opening? Will the Chinese economy be affected by these uncertainties?

-President Xi Jinping said: ‘Reform and Opening is the key measure to determine the destiny of contemporary China”. Today China has become the second global economy, the greatest industrial country, the greatest trading country, the country with the greatest foreign currency reserves. The Total National Power of China has increased significantly, and the standard of living of the people has increased notably. The Chinese people can state with great pride that Reform and Opening, the second Chinese revolution, not only has changed the country markedly, but has also significantly influenced the entire world.

At the start of last year, during the annual meeting of the World Economic Forum, President Xi Jinping set out in detail the insistence of China on the promotion of economic globalisation, the safeguarding of free trade, and the promotion of innovation, among other things. This year marks the 40th Anniversary of the Policy of Reform and Opening. Taking advantage of this opportunity, we have launched a series of significant measures to deepen reforms, widen opening, and promote innovation. In the first half of this year, the Chinese economy has grown by 6.8%, remaining stable within the medium-high range of growth of between 6.7 -6.9% for the twelfth successive quarter. The Chinese economy has a stable tendency to grow with progress and positive prospects. As new growth engines continue to increase in China and the economic perspectives are well supported, China will continue to play a role of “stabiliser” within the global economy”.

-This year is also an important one for Equatorial Guinea. We are going to celebrate the 50th Anniversary of National Independence. As the People’s Republic of China Ambassador to Equatorial Guinea, how do you see the Republic of Equatorial Guinea on the point of celebrating 50 years?

-Equatorial Guinea is about to celebrate the 50th Anniversary of National Independence on 12th October. In the name of the Government and people of China, I wish to express my warmest congratulations to the Government and people of Equatorial Guinea. 50 years after independence, Equatorial Guinea has today become one of the most rapidly developing countries on the African continent. It is a pleasure to see, under the leadership of H. E. Obiang Nguema Mbasogo, that the Equatoguinean people have been united in the fight to achieve the goals of the Plan Horizonte 2020, and build an emerging country. A Chinese proverb says; ‘Look in order to grow”. As the Chinese Ambassador to Equatorial Guinea, my colleagues and I have seen with our own eyes the changes in Equatorial Guinea and its limitless potential for future development. I am convinced that Equatorial Guinea will have a better tomorrow and that the friendly cooperation between China and Equatorial Guinea will have a brighter future”.

Source: Equatorial Guinea Press and Information Office

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