Jia Qinglin Meets with African Union (AU) Chairman Obiang Nguema Mbasogo and African Union Commission (AUC) Chairman Jean Ping
On January 28, 2012, Jia Qinglin, chairman of the National Committee of the Chinese People's Political Consultative Conference, met respectively with African Union (AU) Chairman Obiang Nguema Mbasogo, who is also president of Equatorial Guinea, and African Union Commission (AUC) Chairman Jean Ping in Addis Ababa.
During his meeting with Obiang, Jia first conveyed the cordial greetings from President Hu Jintao and appreciated Obiang's positive contribution to the promotion of AU-China and Equatorial Guinea-China relations. Jia said the AU has played a more and more important role in Africa's internal and external affairs. Faced with complicated influence of international and regional situation, the AU has reacted independently addressing the issues in Africa and maintaining the unity and dignity of Africa and has won understanding and respect of the international community. Facts prove that the African Union is a firm force for maintaining peace, stability and development of Africa and the world at large. Despite many difficulties and challenges, Africa and the African Union have bright prospects for development.
"AU is an important cooperative partner of China in Africa and the international community. In recent years, China-AU relations have developed smoothly, which gives strong impetus to China-Africa relations. China appreciated AU's consistent support for China on issues of China's core interests and major concerns," said Jia. China has always attached great importance to relations with AU from a strategic perspective. "China is willing to make joint efforts with AU and African countries to deepen strategic mutual trust, expand pragmatic cooperation, keep closer coordination, and further push forward China-AU relationship," he added.
Obiang asked Jia to convey his greetings to President Hu Jintao. He said as Africa's great friend, China has offered consistent support and selfless help to Africa, especially the new AU Conference Center constructed with the aid of China which is a new symbol of China-Africa friendship. It makes the AU have a conference and office complex of its own for the first time. There is an African proverb which says, "A building represents love." This magnificent building represents the profound friendship of the Chinese people towards African people and is also a symbol of the sincere gratitude African countries and the African Union expressed to the Chinese side. In face of the complex and changing international situation, African countries must unite and cooperate with China to achieve development, he added.
The two sides also discussed bilateral relations between China and Equatorial Guinea, agreeing to further promote the current sound momentum of bilateral relations, maintain exchanges at high and other levels, continue coordination on major issues and constantly improve the level of trade and investment cooperation.
When meeting with Jean Ping, Jia said the AU is a banner leading African countries in their efforts to strengthen themselves through unity and cooperation. The more challenges peace and development in Africa are facing, the more important it is for African countries to strengthen unity, stick to their own way and run their own affairs well. "China will unswervingly support Africa's efforts to strengthen themselves through unity and its integration process," he added. Jia said China will provide 600 million yuan in aid to the AU in the next three years for projects agreed by the two sides. China supports Africa to achieve interconnectivity and is willing to establish partnership with AU in Africa's infrastructure development planning. China is also willing to strengthen peace and security cooperation with the AU, continue to support the African Union's peacekeeping capacity building, enrich and improve China-AU strategic dialogue mechanism and enhance dialogue, consultation and cooperation under the framework of China-Africa Cooperation Forum.
Jean Ping said the peoples of China and Africa have witnessed a time-honored friendship and that they have supported and helped each other in pursuit of independence and development. The 18th African Union Summit will be held in the AU Conference Centre built with Chinese assistance, which has special historical significance. "African people will never forget China's important role in promoting peace, stability and development of Africa," Jean Ping added. The AU is committed to promoting Africa-China relations and is ready to work with China to further develop the Forum on China-Africa Cooperation. The AU hopes to boost cooperation with China in infrastructure construction, agriculture, manufacture and other fields, so as to improve self-development capacity of Africa.
The two sides also discussed the situation in Africa and regional issues, pledging to keep closer coordination and cooperation in the international and regional affairs.
After the talks, both sides witnessed the signing of related cooperation documents between China and AU.