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Xi Jinping Delivers a Speech at the Julius Nyerere International Convention Center in Tanzania, Stressing China and Africa Will Always Remain Reliable Friends and Faithful Partners

2013/03/25

On March 25, 2013, visiting Chinese President Xi Jinping made an important speech entitled "Remaining Reliable Friends and Faithful Partners Forever" at the Julius Nyerere International Convention Center in Dar es Salaam, Tanzania, summing up the historical experience of China-Africa relations and expounding on China's policy of working with Africa to pursue peace and promote development.

Xi stressed that the Chinese people are currently committed to realizing the Chinese dream of the great rejuvenation of the Chinese nation while African people are striving for the African dream of self-development through unity and growth. People in China and Africa should strengthen unity and cooperation and support and help each other to make their respective dreams come true. At the same time, they should also work with the international community to push for the realization of the world dream of lasting peace and common prosperity, so that we can make greater contributions to the peace and development of mankind.

Around 10:35 A.M., President Xi arrived at the China-aided Julius Nyerere International Convention Center, where he was received by Tanzanian President Jakaya Mrisho Kikwete.

As the two presidents walked into the brightly-lit, packed auditorium with a seating capacity of 1,000 people, all stood up to welcome them. Against the background of the Chinese and Tanzanian national flags and amid warm applause, Xi and Kikwete walked to the center of the rostrum.

As the host, Kikwete made an address first. Speaking highly of the traditional friendship between Tanzania and China as well as between Africa and China and calling the Tanzania-China relations indestructible, he pledged that Tanzania is ready to make concerted efforts with China and other African countries to push vigorously for friendly Tanzania-China and Africa-China cooperation. Then Kikwete invited President Xi to deliver a speech.

In a warm and friendly atmosphere, Xi proceeded with his speech.

Xi said that this is his first visit to Africa after assuming the Chinese presidency. On behalf of the Chinese government and people, he extended his sincere greetings and good wishes to the Tanzanian and African people, who are Chinese people's brothers.

Xi said friendly exchanges between China and Africa have had a long history. In the 1950s and 1960s, the first-generation PRC leaders including Chairman Mao Zedong and Premier Zhou Enlai and the older-generation African statesmen together opened a new era in China-Africa relations. From then on, the Chinese and African people, in their anti-colonial and anti-imperialist struggle for national independence and liberation as well as on their roads towards development, have supported and cooperated with each other and forged a brotherly bond sharing a common fate. At present, with the establishment of the Forum on China-Africa Cooperation and a new type of strategic partnership, China-Africa relations have entered a fast-track of all-round development. Friendship and cooperation between the Chinese and African people has become the defining feature of bilateral ties, which is relished by the international community.

Xi said that history has taught us that China-Africa ties have been forged and sealed in adversity, built on one concrete step after another. China and Africa have always been a community of shared destinies, and similar historical experiences, common development tasks, as well as shared strategic interests have bound the two sides together. He summed up the defining feature of China-Africa relations as sincerity, friendliness, mutual respect, equality, mutual benefit and common development. China has done what is can to help Africa's development, and China is always grateful to African countries and peoples for the firm support and selfless help given to China over the years. History has also shown that China-Africa relations must keep pace with the times and forge ahead in a pioneering spirit.

President Xi stressed that China-Africa relations have reached a new historic starting point, with Africa becoming one of the fastest growing regions and moving ahead like a "galloping African lion," and China continuing to maintain forward momentum in development. Promotion of China-Africa cooperation is the shared aspiration of the people on both sides. Under new circumstances, China-Africa relations have become more important with greater common interests, instead of less important with fewer common interests, Xi said, adding that China will intensify, not weaken, its efforts to expand relations with Africa.

First, in treating African friends, China will remain faithful. Unity and cooperation with African countries have always been an important foundation for China's foreign policy, which will never change, not even when China grows stronger and enjoys a higher international status. China and Africa will continue to support each other on issues involving their core interests and major concerns, and China will remain committed to Africa's endeavor to seek strength through unity and make greater contribution to peace and development in Africa.

Second, in conducting cooperation with Africa, China will value real results. China will faithfully honor whatever commitments it has made to Africa, and continue to offer, as always, necessary assistance to Africa with no political strings attached.

Third, in strengthening friendship with Africa, China will seek to cultivate kinship-like qualities in the relationship. The Chinese and African people are naturally attached to each other. Greater value should be placed on people-to-people exchanges between China and Africa, especially exchanges between their youths, so that their friendship can be passed on to the younger generations.

Fourth, in addressing problems in cooperation with Africa, China will be sincere. China will face squarely and sincerely the new developments and new problems confronting relations with Africa. And the two sides should properly handle any problem that may arise in a spirit of mutual respect and win-win cooperation.

In conclusion, Xi stressed that China has made historic progress in its development, but whatever development stage it is in, China will always regard African countries as its real friends, with a friendship that has been sealed in adversity. China cannot develop and isolate itself from the world and Africa, while the world and Africa also need China for prosperity and stability.

As the speech struck a responsive chord in the audience, it was punctuated by thunderous applauses.

Before the speech, a handover ceremony was held for the Convention Center, with President Xi handing to President Kikwete a golden key symbolizing the completion of the construction of the Julius Nyerere International Convention Center.

On the morning before the speech, Xi, accompanied by Kikwete, visited a photo exhibition showcasing fifty years of China-Tanzania friendship, including the friendly exchanges between the two countries' different generations of leaders over the years as well as cooperation achievements in various fields. Pictures of the Tanzanian railway, Chinese medical workers treating local patients, Chinese agricultural experts helping local farmers grow rice, Tanzanian people in torch relay for the 2008 Beijing Olympics and others all capture the profound traditional friendship between the two countries.

Peng Liyuan, Wang Huning, Li Zhanshu and Yang Jiechi attended the above activities.

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