China-Africa Economic and Trade Cooperation (2013)
Updated: 2013-08-29 14:04
China-Africa relations have reached a new historic level. Africa, a continent full of hope and thirsty for development, has become one of the world's fastest growing regions, while China, the world's largest developing country, has maintained forward momentum in its development. With increasing common interests and mutual needs, the two sides have great opportunities to accelerate their economic and trade cooperation.
Currently, the Chinese people are working hard to realize the Chinese dream of national revival, while African people are committed to the African dream of gaining strength through unity and achieving development and renewal. With a spirit of mutual respect and win-win cooperation, China will continue to take concrete measures to build a Sino-African community of shared destinies featuring all-round, diversified and deep cooperation. It will work to advance China-Africa economic and trade cooperation to help both sides make their respective dreams come true. China is also willing to enhance its cooperation with the rest of the world to promote Africa's prosperity and development.
Implementation of the Economic & Trade Measures of the Fourth FOCAC Ministerial Conference
1. The two sides have engaged in enhanced policy dialogue and practical cooperation on climate change. China has, on many occasions, sent senior officials, including the special envoy for climate change negotiations, to African countries to exchange views. During the Cancun Conference, the Durban Conference, the Ministerial Consultation of BASIC countries and other related negotiations and conferences, China has engaged in dialogue and consultation and also coordinated its position with African countries to uphold the common interests of developing countries. With a view to improving the abilities of African countries to adapt to climate change, China has implemented over 100 clean energy projects in Africa.
2. China has worked to raise the level of its scientific and technological cooperation with Africa. Following the Fourth FOCAC Ministerial Conference, China launched the China-Africa Science and Technology Partnership Plan, which aims to promote technology transfer to Africa and expand the sharing of scientific and technological achievements. The China-Africa Scientific and Technological Cooperation Roundtable was held in Egypt at the end of 2009. China has conducted 115 joint research and demonstration projects with African countries. China has also hosted 66 African post-doctoral students and donated research equipment to 24 returning African researchers who have concluded their joint research projects in China.
3. China has made concrete efforts to fulfill its promise to build up Africa's financial capabilities. By May 2012, China had approved US$11.3 billion in concessional loans for 92 projects, fulfilling its promise six months early. These loans are mainly used for funding infrastructure and social development projects in Africa.
By the end of 2012, the special loan for the development of small and medium-sized businesses in Africa, set up by China Development Bank, had promised to make loans totaling to US$1.213 billion, and US$2 billion had been collected for the second tranche of China-Africa Development Fund. China has canceled debts of interest-free government loans that matured by the end of 2009 owed by all heavily indebted poor countries and least developed countries in Africa that have diplomatic relations with China.
4. China has further opened its markets to African products. All of the 30 least developed countries in Africa that have diplomatic ties with China enjoy zero-tariff treatment for 60% of their exports to China, covering 4,762 items. Thanks to this policy, African exports to China have grown rapidly, reaching US$93.2 billion in 2011 and increasing 39% year on year. In 2012, African exports to China totaled US$113.17 billion, an increase of 21.4% over the previous year.
5. China has scaled up its agricultural cooperation with Africa. By the end of 2012, following the implementation of eight new measures to strengthen cooperation with Africa, China had built seven new agricultural technology demonstration centers for Africa. This increased the number of such centers on the continent to 22. By that time, China had also sent 50 agricultural technology teams to African countries. These teams trained more than 5,000 local technical personnel.
6. China has steadily advanced its health cooperation with Africa. By the end of 2012, China had dispatched 43 medical teams to 42 countries and regions in Africa, where the teams treated more than 5.57 million patients. There are now 1,006 Chinese medical professionals in Africa. China has provided medical equipment, materials and medicines to 42 countries and regions in Africa, and also to 30 African hospitals and 30 malaria prevention centers.
7. China has further strengthened its human resources development and educational cooperation with Africa. From 2010 to 2012, China ran training sessions with a total capacity of 27,318 trainees for officials and technical personnel from 54 countries and regions in Africa. The training sessions covered the fields of public management, energy, health, social security and manufacturing.
In the field of education, from 2010 to 2012, China built 28 new schools in Africa, provided equipment to 42 African schools, and funded 18,743 scholarships to students from Africa, 6,717 of which were given in 2012. During the same period, the 20+20 Cooperation Plan for Chinese and African Universities was launched, allowing 20 pairs of Chinese and African universities to conduct cooperative projects. China has also opened 31 Confucius Institutes and five Confucius Classrooms in 26 countries and regions of Africa.
8. China has actively run the China-Africa Joint Research and Exchange Plan. Between its inception in March 2010 and the end of 2012, the program supported Chinese and African scholars working on 64 projects (including 29 research projects, 16 workshops, 16 academic exchanges, and three publication projects) and organized academic exchanges between the two sides involving as many as 600 people. Thanks to the Exchange Plan, the Forum for Chinese and African Think Tanks has become institutionalized. One of the important platforms for exchanges between Chinese and African think tanks, the forum held its second conference in October 2012. The China Development Bank has set up a special fund to support academic exchanges between China and Africa.