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China Daily Website  

Chinese firms continue operations in Africa

Updated: 2014-08-19 13:17


Liberian President Ellen Johnson-Sirleaf lauded the medical aid from China, which has just been hit by a devastating Yunnan earthquake, as a huge "inspiration" to the African country that has been mired in the Ebola outbreak since March.

The brotherly ties between China and Africa could be described by a famous Chinese saying -- A friend in need is a friend indeed.

China has offered in April then Ebola-affected African countries - Guinea, Liberia, Sierra Leone and Guinea-Bissau - with relief supplies worth one million RMB ($162,000 dollars) respectively to combat the deadly virus.

These supplies, delivered to the African nations in May, were instrumental in fighting the disease.

Beijing upgraded its assistance to Guinea, Liberia and Sierra Leone as the situation escalated. China said on Aug. 7 that it will provide the three West African countries with emergency humanitarian aid.

The supplies, worth 30 million yuan ($4.9 million dollars), included medical protective clothes, disinfectants, thermo-detectors and medicines.

UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon also applauded China's timely assistance to Africa and called on the international community to continue to help African countries fight the epidemic.4

The emergency aid of China, a country with rich experiences in controlling and preventing public health emergencies, such as the outbreak of SARS in 2003 and the H7N9 bird flu virus in recent years, is critical to combat the epidemic, said the World Health Organization (WHO).

Besides, despite the spiraling panic and widespread outflow of capitals among foreign investors in Guinea, Chinese companies' investment and operation are a staunch support to the country highly dependent on foreign investment, said Guinean financial analyst Aliou Bah.

The Chinese companies are confident about the African market, said Zhang Jun of the CWE. "Hydroelectricity is the fundamental business of my company in Africa. We believe China's advanced technology in this aspect can work in Africa and will contribute to its development."

Zhang Xiaoyu, head of the Hauwai branch in Guinea, also said that Huawei, contractor of Guinea's national broadband infrastructure project, will considerably promote the country's informatization.

"I believe that Guinea will witness rapid development after it weathers the current difficulty," he added.

From low-end products to high-end manufacturing, from traditional business to emerging industries, China and Africa have seen economic and trade cooperation upgraded and their interests increasingly intertwined.

Bilateral trade volume in 2013 reached $210.2 billion dollars, over 2,000 times that in 1960. China has been Africa's biggest trading partner for five years, and the latter China's second largest project contracting market and fourth investment destination.

China-Africa cooperation is seeing a burgeoning growth, as Africa's exports to China soars after the continent's steel, copper, chemical fertilizer and electronic products entered Chinese market in recent years.

In 2011, Africa's trade surplus to China reached 20.1 billion dollars. Over 2,500 Chinese companies have invested in Africa till now, creating more than 100,000 local jobs.

With intertwined destiny, morality and interests, China and Africa will see more reciprocal economic and trade cooperation in the future.

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