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Chinese Ambassador to Zimbabwe Mr. Xin Shunkang Launch the celebration of 30th Anniversary of establishment of China-Zimbabwe Diplomatic Relations

    On 21st January 2010, Chinese Ambassador to Zimbabwe Mr. Xin Shunkang held a press conference at the embassy to launch the 30th anniversary celebrations of establishment of China-Zimbabwe Diplomatic Relations. Senior officials from the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Zimbabwe, and journalists from Herald, ZBC-TV, New Ziana, Financial Gazette, Xinhua News Agency and China Radio International attended the press conference. The full text of Ambassador Xin’s address is as follows:

Briefing by H.E. Xin Shunkang at the Launch of the 30th Anniversary Celebrations of establishment of China --Zimbabwe Diplomatic Relations

Harare, 21st January, 2010

Dear friends and colleagues,

Ladies and gentlemen,

    Thank you for attending today’s press conference! Please, First of all, allow me, on behalf of Chinese Embassy and my colleagues, to give you, and through you to Zimbabwean people most sincere festive greetings. Happy New Year!

    As we all know, China and Zimbabwe enjoy a profound traditional friendship, which could be dated back to the liberation struggle of Zimbabwe. In the 1960s, the Chinese Government and people firmly supported the Zimbabwean people in their fight for national liberation. Our two countries established diplomatic relations on the very day of Zimbabwe’s independence. In the 30 years since then, our friendship has remained as vigorous as ever. The two countries have enjoyed frequent high-level contacts, enhanced political mutual trust and ever deepening cooperation in such fields as economic development and trade, culture, education, health and military affairs as well as close consultation and coordination in international and regional affairs. The Chinese side highly appreciates Zimbabwe’s firm commitment to the One-China Policy and its support of China’s great cause of reunification. The Chinese Government and people value its traditional friendship with Zimbabwe; view Zimbabwe as a trustworthy friend and important partner.

    For the past 3 years since the Beijing summit of Forum on China-Africa Cooperation (FOCAC), China has played an active role in promoting Sino-Zimbabwean practical cooperation in various fields and the implementation of the 8 measures has been launched comprehensively with smooth progress and initial results. The progress is as follows: China provided 480 million RMB Yuan (70 million USD) Concessional Loan and 200 million USD buyer’s credits to Zimbabwe; selected 300 Zimbabwe’s Officials annually to receive training in China with the total cost of 5 million USD; dispatched 15 youth volunteers to Zimbabwe; constructed a China-Zimbabwe Friendship Hospital in Mahusekua,Mashonaland East Province with a total investment of 70 million RMB Yuan (10 million USD); built two rural schools, located in Harare and Bindura with a total investment of 10 million RMB Yuan (1.5 million USD); set up an agricultural demonstration center covering 108 hectares in Gwebi College of Agriculture; dispatched 10 senior agricultural experts to Zimbabwe to cooperate with local agricultural officials and farmers to improve agriculture production; donated 5 million USD, through WFP to purchase and dispatch food to Zimbabwe people; provided 500,000 USD to Zimbabwe Government to fight cholera in 2008 and 5 million USD to help Zimbabwe Government to revive its economy in 2009. The total amount of aid that the Chinese Government provided to the Zimbabwean Government in the past 3 years is approximately 300 million USD.

    The past year 2009 was meaningful for China-Zimbabwe relationship. The two countries maintained exchanges of high level visits, deepened practical cooperation in economic and trade section and boosted cultural exchanges and cooperation of. We saw thousands of Zimbabwean people visited China, from officials to businessmen, from youths to women, from ZANU (PF) to MDC. We saw senior Chinese delegations visited Zimbabwean, led by Deputy Foreign Minister in April, deputy Governor of Gansu Province in November and Member of Standing Committee of Jilin Province of the Communist Party of China in December respectively. We also saw several Chinese arts troupes attended variety of cultural events held in Zimbabwe and gained loud applauds among local communities. We even saw the great changes happened in Chinese Embassy. We had a new Ambassador, a new Embassy and a new height for China-Zimbabwe friendship.

Dear friends,

    Although I came to Zimbabwe only 5 months ago, I am delighted and proud to have witnessed some of the fruitful progress made in cooperation of different fields between our two countries. I am also looking forward to further strengthening the existing friendly relations to bring more benefits to our two peoples. The year 2010 is not only Zimbabwe’s 30th anniversary of independence, but also the 30th anniversary of establishment of China--Zimbabwe diplomatic relations. Chinese Embassy in Zimbabwe is planning to work in various areas and host a series of events as follows to celebrate on the special occasion:

    1. Further promote exchanges of high-level visits between our two countries to strengthen mutual political trust. For example, Minister of Foreign Affairs of Zimbabwe, Hon. Mumbengegwi is going to visit China in late February at invitation of his counterpart, Minister of Foreign Affairs of China, Hon. Yang Jiechi. Other senior leaders of our two Governments are also expected to pay exchange visits.

    2. Fully implement the eight new measure put forward by Chinese Premier Wen Jiabao at the fourth Ministerial Conference of FOCAC last November in Zimbabwe to enhance bilateral economic and trade cooperation. For instance, our two countries just signed two agreements on the provision of a 315 million RMB Yuan (46 million USD) concessional loan and the 50 million RMB Yuan ( 7.35 million USD) grant respectively to support Netone expand its network coverage and implement the projects to be agreed upon through consultations between the two Governments. We also propose to build 2 solar power projects for Zimbabwe, support Chinese financial institutes in setting up special fund for small and medium-scale Zimbabwean businesses and send 1 agricultural technology team to Zimbabwe. Most importantly, the fifth Joint-Commission between China and Zimbabwe is set to be held in May, 2010 to further stimulate bilateral investment.

    3. Promote cultural and people-to-people exchanges to solidify China-Zimbabwe friendship. To name a few, we are planning to issue the Commemorative Cover to mark the 30-year-long bilateral foreign relations, to invite one top Chinese arts troupe to attend this year’s HIFA, to hold a Chinese Film Festival in Zimbabwe, to arrange a friendly football game between China and Zimbabwe National Teams and to advance the implementation of Chinese Government Scholarship, etc.

    Dear friends from the media, you are the bridge of friendship between peoples of our two countries. Only through your diligent work, can Zimbabwean people learn more about China. I just want to extend my sincere gratitude to all of you for your contributions to China-Zimbabwe friendship. This is my first press conference since my arrival in last August, however, I am sure that it is only the beginning of our friendly cooperation. I’m deeply convinced that, with the joint efforts of the two sides, the implementation of the said measures in Zimbabwe will be smooth and successful as before. Let’s work shoulder to shoulder to push China-Zimbabwe friendship to a new height! Thank you! Tatenda!

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