2007-12-26 13:00:51 Xinhua English
CAIRO, Dec. 26 (Xinhua) -- China welcomes the efforts of other countries and the international community to promote peace and development in the African continent, the Chinese envoy to Egypt said on Wednesday.
In an exclusive interview with Xinhua, Chinese Ambassador to Egypt Wu Chunhua said the Sino-Egyptian friendship is based on mutual respect, equality and mutual benefit, while the bilateral cooperation, as a part of the international cooperation, is public, open and transparent.
"China would like to learn from the respective cooperation between Africa and other international communities to make mutual promotion," said Wu.
He hailed the Forum on China-Africa Cooperation as a good platform to facilitate the bilateral cooperation, noting that economic and trade exchange between China and Africa are complementary.
Follow-up actions of the China-Africa Cooperation Forum Beijing Summit held in November 2006 were being implemented smoothly and have produced initial results, Wu added.
"After more than 50 years of the establishment of China-Africa diplomatic ties, the Sino-African friendship has endured the test of time, while the consolidation of unity and cooperation with African countries is China's long-term strategic choice," said the Chinese diplomat.
As for the bilateral cooperation between China and Egypt, the first African and Arab country to establish diplomatic ties with China, Wu said that the two countries witnessed more and more political exchanges in 2007, including exchange of high-level visits.
In 2007, Wu Bangguo, chairman of the Standing Committee of the National People's Congress (NPC) of China, visited Egypt, while Ahmed Fathi Sorour, Speaker of the Egyptian People's Assembly(lower house of the parliament) visited China.
"The bilateral strategic cooperation was consolidated and deepened in the past year, while the exchange and cooperation in various fields keeps good development trend," Wu said.
The bilateral trade is rising rapidly with the total volume up to 4 billion U.S. dollars, a 25-percent increase year-on-year, while the number of Chinese companies in Egypt rose to more than300 with the total investment of over 400 million dollars, providing more than 6,000 job opportunities to the Egyptian people, according to Wu.
He also lauded the cultural exchange between the two countries as the "Chinese fever" is popular in Egypt, with the establishment of a Confucius Institute at Cairo University, the first in Egypt and northern Africa.
As China's full-fledged representative to the Arab League, Wu also highlighted the role of the China-Arab Cooperation Forum since its establishment in 2004 through holding two ministerial meetings, four senior official-level meetings and two entrepreneur conferences, as well as two conferences on civilization dialogue.
The Chinese diplomat expressed China's willingness to explore new forms, channels and systems to construct new China-Arab partnership and promote bilateral understanding and friendship.