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No interference in Zim's internal affairs is China's policy towards Zim
---Remarks by Spokesperson of the Chinese Embassy in Zimbabwe
2020/08/25

The Standard carried an article on 23 August by a Mr. Tawanda Majoni. By questioning Anjin's return, the author falsely claims the Chinese government is somehow involved in Anjin's business deals and conflicts in the country, which is a distortion and smearing of the Chinese foreign policy towards Zimbabwe. The piece is full of unfounded accusations, conjectures and sheer lies, proving nothing but an appalling lack of common sense and self-confidence. The only motive for cooking up these absurdly far-stretched claims is to attract attention, sow discord in China-Zimbabwe bilateral friendly relations, and drag China into Zimbabwe's internal affairs, all serving the author's own hidden political agenda. Certainly, looking at this from his angle, we do understand this is an easy way for him to make money and gain political capital, even to live a better life. For this reason, perhaps some sympathy is due.

Mutual respect for each other's sovereignty, non-interference in each other's internal affairs, equality, and mutual benefit are the fundamental principles governing China's relations with Zimbabwe. Sincerity, real results, affinity, and good faith are the philosophy underpinning China's cooperation with and assistance to Zimbabwe. This is the reason why, despite being a developing country itself and still confronted with a host of difficulties and challenges, China has remained a steadfast supporter of Zimbabwe's development over decades. Our dedicated and selfless help, in the form in grants and financing support, among others, has seen the construction of schools, hospitals, power stations, and airports across the country. Thousands of boreholes have been drilled, reconstruction of the areas hardest hit by Cyclone Idai is being pushed forward with full strength, more than ten thousand tons of food are reaching ordinary Zimbabweans for years in a row. Mr. Tawanda Majoni not only turned a blind eye and pretended to be deaf to the above facts, but also concocted shameless lies and made quite some jarring noises. However China's policy toward Zimbabwe will not be changed by a nasty attempt like this. Our policy has withstood the test of the ups and downs in history; it is strong and mature enough; our approach and practice are based on a set of the highest ethical standards.

No country in the world understands Zimbabwe better than Zimbabwe itself. Not interfering in or criticizing Zimbabwe's internal affairs is the bottom line of our foreign policy towards Zimbabwe. It is our firm conviction that no country can solve its problems by counting on external intervention. We trust the wisdom and capabilities of Zimbabweans themselves. Never before has China got itself involved in the internal affairs of Zimbabwe. Nothing we are doing at the moment is remotely close to this. Never in the future will we be interested in doing so. There is neither the intention nor the interest on China's part. Those obsessed with fabricating lies about China doing this are either typically ignorant or obviously paranoid.

We take note the good progress made by Zimbabwe in creating a better business environment. We trust the persistent efforts by the Zimbabwean government will bring more foreign investors, including Chinese, to the country. The Chinese Embassy will continue to encourage Chinese investment in Zimbabwe for a stronger economic relationship that benefits both sides.

It has also come to our attention that unfounded allegations about China looting Zimbabwean resources have been circulating in some circles. Our consistent position, which warrants reiteration here, is that the Chinese government is not interested in taking resources from Zimbabwe. This is never our intention and we have never done anything close to it. In fact, it takes little more than a serious look at all the cooperation agreements between the two governments to see the fact. Mining is not in any of them; natural resources are not used as a collateral or in exchange for support in any of them. No Chinese state-owned enterprise is extracting such precious metals as gold, diamond, and platinum in Zimbabwe. Unfortunately, Mr. Majoni did not do his homework properly as a serious journalist should have, but was driven solely by his personal interests. I don't mind helping him a bit. He should know Anhui Foreign Economic Construction Group is only a private Chinese company, with no interests whatsoever connected with the Chinese government. His story about Anjin having something to do with China's security sector or strategic interests, though intriguing, is a made-up plot, a figment of his fertile imagination. He could have better prospects as a second rate novelist or screenwriter, but not a political commentator. Any political commentator worth his salt would know not fooling his readers with lies is the basic moral value, even if he is writing for bread.

It is a fact that private companies from various countries, including Chinese ones, are investing in Zimbabwe's mining sector. It is a fact that their investments help to fill up Zimbabwe's financing and technology gaps in developing the mining industry. Returns on investments are a legal right, not looting. The Chinese Embassy, though not in a position to oversee the business operations of these private Chinese companies, consistently asks them to abide by Zimbabwean laws and regulations and protect the environment. Our long-held belief is that Zimbabwe's natural resources belong to Zimbabweans. On many occasions, we have suggested that the Zimbabwean government set up a compliance monitoring mechanism in all mining companies working in the country, Zimbabwean and foreign alike. It will play a supervisory role over whether the enterprises operate legally, whether they comply with Zimbabwe's environmental protection and labor policies, and whether they trade mineral products in legal channels; it will also make it mandatory for the enterprises to share with the public information about its investment cost, output and profit sharing arrangements. We hope this will make Zimbabwe and its people the beneficiary of mining gains, bring about greater corporate transparency, and encourage the sustained growth of businesses.

The friendship between China and Zimbabwe has been growing ever more resilient with the passage of time. Both governments and peoples are committed to promoting the common interests of the two states and populations. Any one with a real sense of responsibility should be truthful and show respect for facts when talking about this precious bond, instead of fabricating lies for favor and seizing personal interests.

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