Post Sat Mar 30, 2013 12:49 am

China will be Africa's all-weather friend: Xi

BRAZZAVILLE - Visiting Chinese President Xi Jinping said here Friday that China will always be an all-weather friend and partner of Africa.
"China will continue to uphold the principle of peace, development, cooperation and mutual benefit, and dedicate itself unswervingly to safeguarding world peace and promoting common development," Xi said in a speech delivered at the parliament of the Republic of Congo.

"No matter how the international situation will change, China is always Africa's all-weather friend and partner," said Xi, who arrived in the central African country earlier Friday for a state visit.
The Republic of Congo is the last leg of Xi's four-nation tour, his first foreign trip since assuming presidency earlier this month. He has already visited Russia, Tanzania and South Africa.
The Chinese president noted that since China and the Republic of Congo established diplomatic ties nearly half a century ago, bilateral friendship has grown steadily and vigorously and produced fruitful results.
The comprehensive cooperative partnership of solidarity and mutual assistance between China and the Republic of Congo has become a model of South-South cooperation, said Xi.
The Chinese president, who also attended the fifth BRICS summit in Durban, South Africa, said he had met with many African leaders during the trip and had extensive contacts with African people from various sectors.
"I have a very deep feeling that Africa is a continent full of vitality and hope," Xi said. "China-Africa cooperation has great potential and bright prospects."
In the new era, China's development will bring unprecedented opportunities to Africa, while Africa's development will also provide unprecedented opportunities for China's development, Xi said, calling on the two sides to stick to the path of mutually beneficial cooperation and common development.
China will firmly keep up solidarity and mutual assistance with African nations, continue to increase aid to Africa within its capabilities, expand trade with and investment in Africa, strengthen practical cooperation with the continent and make joint efforts to address the challenges posed by global economic risks and difficulties, Xi said.
China will firmly strive to enhance mutual trust with African nations and consolidate the political foundation of China-Africa traditional friendship, Xi said.
China supports African states in following the development paths which they have chosen on their own and which suit their respective domestic conditions, and backs the efforts of the African states and regional organizations, such as the African Union, in safeguarding national sovereignty and independently settling the issues on the continent, he said.
He promised that China will play a constructive role in bolstering peace and security in Africa.
China will also firmly maintain close cooperation with African nations and increase coordination with them in international affairs, Xi added.