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Liu Qinghai Talks about China-Africa Community
Post Time: 29/09/2018


When accepting an interview from China Social Sciences Net, Liu Qinghai, director of the Institute of Economics at the Institute of African Studies at Zhejiang Normal University (IASZNU), expressed her opinions on building a China-Africa community with a shared future, African debt, and Chinese-African cooperation and integration.


The full text reads as follows:

On September 4, the 2018 Beijing Summit of the Forum on China-Africa Cooperation (FOCAC) was concluded. The FOCAC has become a model of South-South cooperation and a banner of international cooperation with Africa. The success of the Beijing Summit has opened a new chapter of Sino-African relations and set up a new monument to South-South cooperation.

The FOCAC Beijing Summit was devoted to promoting the joint construction of the Belt and Road between China and Africa, the 2030 Agenda for the Sustainable Development of the United Nations, Agenda 2063 of the African Union, and the development strategies of various African countries. The conference published the Beijing Declaration-Toward an Even Stronger China-Africa Community with a Shared Future and passed the Forum on China-Africa Cooperation Beijing Action Plan, sending a signal to the world that China and Africa will enjoy even closer cooperation.

Liu Qinghai says the summit proposes to build a China-Africa community that will have a shared future and assume joint responsibility, pursue win-win cooperation, deliver happiness for all, enjoy cultural prosperity, ensure common security, and promote harmony between humans and nature. Incorporating distinctive characteristics of the times and rich connotations, the proposition clearly imagines a new path for and adds new energy to the construction of a China-Africa community with a shared future.

Liu remarks that, first of all, truly achieving win-win cooperation requires that both China and Africa have certain powers and shoulder corresponding responsibilities. Only when China and Africa assume joint responsibility, strengthen mutual understanding and support on issues relating to each other’s core interests and major concerns, and cooperate closely with each other on major international and regional issues, can the two parties truly make good use of the opportunities brought about by the construction of the Belt and Road and better build a China-Africa community with a shared future. Such cooperation is necessary, especially for a world in which hegemony and power politics still exist, protectionism and unilateralism are rising, and the international order is changing. Secondly, enjoying cultural prosperity, ensuring common security, and promoting harmony between humans and nature provides a path for building a China-Africa community with a shared future from three important aspects: cultural exchange, security cooperation, and environmental cooperation. Delivering happiness to all means improving the well-being of Chinese and African peoples. This is the starting point, the goal, and the purpose of the development of Sino-African relations. Furthermore, these types of agreements clearly outline the bright future of the construction of a China-Africa community. The construction of a China-Africa community with a shared future will set a good example for the construction of a community of human beings with a shared future.

In response to the question raised by some members of the Western media that China is aggravating African debt, Liu says that China does not aggravate the African debt burden and that the so-called “debt trap” is absurd. Liu says that according to research conducted by the Center for African Studies at Johns Hopkins University, 17 African countries are experiencing a debt crisis or high debt risk, including Burundi, Gambia, Cape Verde, the Central African Republic, Sao Tome and Principe, South Sultan, Chad, and Mauritania. These countries have little debt to China, and China does not aggravate the African debt burden. For example, China holds less than 2% of Cape Verde’s debt and only granted four small loans to Burundi. As of 2017, China has not granted any loans to Gambia.

Liu adds that according to the study of the International Monetary Fund, the debt crisis in the Central African Republic, Burundi, and southern Sultan is primarily due to the economic collapse caused by conflicts. In Chad and Mauritania, however, “the collapse of fuel prices, slow policy responses, and currency depreciation are the primary causes.” (Translated by Jin Haiqiong, edited by Xiamara Hohman)


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