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Ambassador Liu Guijin: upcoming FOCAC Beijing Summit Boosts Friendship, Peace, Cooperation and Development

(Ask the Embassy)

Q: It is widely reported that a China-Africa Summit will be held in Beijing in early November. Could you please tell us something about it?

Ambassador Liu Guijin:

  Indeed, the Beijing Summit and the Third Ministerial Conference of the Forum on China-Africa Cooperation (FOCAC) is to be held from 3 to 5 November 2006. The Summit will be the highest-level, largest-scale meeting ever between China and African leaders. President Thabo Mbeki, together with more than 30 other African heads of state or government, will fly to Beijing to attend the Summit.

When FOCAC was launched in 2000, I was personally involved as the secretary-general of its preparatory committee and the following-up committee of the Chinese side. So I am only too happy and even excited to share my understanding of the upcoming FOCAC Beijing Summit.

Both China and Africa attach great importance to the co-sponsored Beijing Summit. The two sides have, through consultation, set the theme of the Summit as "friendship, peace, cooperation and development." Centering on this theme, Chinese and African leaders at the Summit will review friendly cooperation between China and Africa over the past five decades and the achievements of FOCAC over the past six years as well as plan for future pragmatic cooperation. They will also exchange views on some major international issues and explore the way to boost a new type of China-Africa Strategic Partnership featuring political equality and mutual trust, economic win-win cooperation and culture exchange and mutual emulation.

  The message here is very clear, both China and Africa have strong desires to seriously engage with each other and are making joint efforts to achieve common development goals in a cooperative, action-oriented way.

 To make things of mutual benefit happen in a cooperative and pragmatic way always works wonders. Cooperation between China and Africa within the framework of FOCAC has produced tangible and fruitful results during the past six years. FOCAC, though still in its formative years, has become an effective mechanism for collective dialogue between China and Africa and an important platform to carry out pragmatic cooperation. It is gaining momentum.

The Beijing Summit, I believe, will surely help deepen mutual understanding and friendship between China and Africa and provide the basis for stronger and more far-reaching friendly cooperation. Without any doubt, the Summit is going to be an important milestone in China-Africa relations.

I wish the FOCAC Beijing Summit full success.

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