Home / 2015 Xi visit Africa

Convention center in spotlight ahead of Xi's arrival for summit

By Lucie Morangi ( Updated: 2015-12-02 21:30

Convention center in spotlight ahead of Xi's arrival for summit

A visitor looks at a Chinese railway exhibit in Johannesburg, Dec 2, 2015. [Photo provided to]

Johannesburg, South Africa — Forum of China Africa Cooperation (FOCAC) preparations enter the final stretch as South Africa readies to host its second summit in Johannesburg.

Security has been tightened around the venue, the Sandton Convention Centre. More police patrol cars and riders are visible in the up market business area that is also home to some renowned international global hotel chains.

"We believe Sandton is becoming known as a preferred location for many pan-African events because of the ease of access to Johannesburg and Sandton's central location in the commercial and business heart of South Africa," said executive director Mati Nyazema.

The venue itself is a buzz of activity ahead of the summit which opens on Friday.

Thursday will see the Sixth Ministerial meeting at the Department of International Cooperation in Pretoria.

The Johannesburg summit is expected to be attended by dozens of heads of state and government, representatives of the African Union, heads of regional organizations and multilateral organizations which will be held under the theme: Africa-China Progressing Together; Win-Win Cooperation for Common Development.

The Sandton centre is a purpose-built 12-storey structure with 22,000m² of space, designed to hold an array of events concurrently, accommodating up to 10,000 guests at any one time.

"We have worked hard to achieve an impeccable track record for hosting large congresses and high-level delegations, providing the ideal platform to facilitate the exchange of ideas and strategy," said Nyazema.

Like a well oiled motor, exhibitors participating in the China-Africa Equipment Manufacturing Industry that will run co-currently with the summit were putting everything in place ready to showcase modern infrastructure technology to the high level dignitaries.

In the high-speed rail equipment section, names such as China Railway Rolling Stock Corporation were putting their best foot forward by displaying miniature high-speed trains on tracks. According to the September issue of the International Railway Journal, the Beijing-based company is the world's largest train builder that posted a 6.85 percent increase in profit in June.

According to an official at the booth they intend to push locomotives and rolling stock in the African market following an increase of the product driven by development of rail infrastructure. The company accounts for 80 percent of the rolling stock on China's rail network.

In the China-Africa regional aviation cooperation, Commercial Aircraft Corporation of China Ltd is present.

Other companies that will be exhibiting are manufacturers of agricultural equipment, ICT infrastructure and mobile devices, real estate products and even security equipment such as armored cars.

Established in 2000, FOCAC aims to promote bilateral ties and cooperation between China and Africa through dialogue.

Most Popular