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Wang Yi Holds Talks with Botswanan Minister of International Affairs and Cooperation Lemogang Kwape

On January 7, 2021 local time, State Councilor and Foreign Minister Wang Yi held talks with Botswanan Minister of International Affairs and Cooperation Lemogang Kwape in Gaborone.

Wang Yi said, China-Botswana relations are based on mutual respect, mutual trust and mutual support. China always maintains that all countries, big or small, are equal and China adheres to the principle of non-interference in other countries' internal affairs. After withstanding setbacks and tests, China-Botswana relations have become more resilient and dynamic. A broad consensus on strengthening bilateral relations and promoting cooperation in various fields reached by the two heads of state has played a strategic leading role in the development of China-Botswana relations. China appreciates Botswana's reaffirmation of the one-China principle and will continue to support Botswana in safeguarding its national sovereignty, independence and territorial integrity, and exploring a path of development that suits its national conditions.

Wang Yi said that the two sides should cherish the hard-won situation of sound bilateral relations, consolidate political foundation and deepen mutual trust. China is willing to continue to strengthen anti-pandemic cooperation with Botswana, and synergize efforts of pandemic prevention and control and economic development, so that the construction of bilateral cooperation projects can be resumed in an orderly manner, and the fight against the pandemic can achieve victory. Botswana will become the 46th African partner in the BRI cooperation, and this has coincided with the 46th anniversary of the establishment of diplomatic relations between the two countries, which is a good symbol. This will encourage and support enterprises of the two countries in deepening mutually beneficial cooperation, so as to open up new prospects for China-Botswana cooperation and benefit the two peoples. China is willing to work with Botswana to leverage the bilateral cooperation mechanism, promote cooperation in agriculture, infrastructure, digital economy, and other fields, and achieve new results in mutually beneficial cooperation of the two countries.

Wang Yi said that China is not only a developing country economically, but also has always been on the side of developing countries politically, and that China is willing to work with Botswana to uphold multilateralism, oppose unilateral bullying, and firmly safeguard the international system with the UN at its core and the international order underpinned by international law. China will also work with Botswana to actively promote the synergy of the UN 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development with the African Union's Agenda 2063, and increase the voice of developing countries in international affairs.

Lemogang Kwape said that since the establishment of diplomatic relations, the two countries have respected each other as bilateral relations have deepened continuously and shown a positive momentum of development. The Botswanan government firmly adheres to the one-China principle and regards China as a long-term strategic partner. China's strong economic recovery brings opportunities to Botswana's economic development. Botswana is willing to hold a meeting of the bilateral economic, trade and technical joint committee with China as soon as possible, and strengthen cooperation in agriculture, tourism, trade and human resources development so as to promote further development of bilateral relations. Botswana appreciates China's great support for its fight against the pandemic and welcomes more Chinese enterprises to invest in Botswana. Botswana also appreciates China's positive role in safeguarding the international multilateral system and thanks China for its firm support for the African Union's Agenda 2063 and its important contribution to supporting Africa's medical and health undertakings within the framework of the Forum on China-Africa Cooperation. Botswana looks forward to strengthening coordination and cooperation with China to jointly safeguard multilateralism, promote sustainable development and increase the voice of developing countries.

Both sides also exchanged in-depth views on international and regional issues of common concern. Botswanan ministers of trade and investment, finance, health, agriculture, transportation and labor also attended the talks.

After the talks, the two foreign ministers signed a Memorandum of Understanding between the two governments on jointly promoting the construction of the Belt and Road Initiative and other cooperation documents.

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