By Abdul Rahman Suagibu –
NEW AFRICA BUSINESS NEWS, Freetown, Sierra Leone- ZIMBABWE has surrendered six new projects for serious consideration by China to improve on economic cooperation between the two countries.
The projects were given through a ministerial team chaired by Foreign Affairs and International Trade Minister – Dr. Sibusiso Moyo which was authorized by President Mnangagwa to find ways of focusing the country’s economic cooperation with China.The committee also worked with Vice President Constantino Chiwenga and the Chinese Embassy.
Speaking at a dinner hosted in honour of Chinese Foreign Affairs Minister Mr Wang Yi, Acting President Chiwenga said it was his hope that, these projects would receive Chinese aid to accelerate the two countries’ economic cooperation for mutual benefit.
“As you are aware, Your Excellency, we have set ourselves a target to attain the status of an upper middle income economy by 2030. It is our hope that these projects, if started early, will provide the impetus that we need towards that objective,” stated Acting President – Chiwenga.
He said while there were some issues on either side that could have been slowing down cooperation, Zimbabwe was committed to seeing the fruits of the partnership and will therefore work “extra-hard” to remove any impediment to its growth.
Acting President Chiwenga noted, it will be the function of this ministerial committee to ensure the economic partnership between Zimbabwe and China remained on track.
“Our expectation is that our two sides will continue to have a meeting of minds on what needs to be done to grow this relationship on the basis of win-win cooperation,” he said.
Zimbabwe has got the zest to scale up economic cooperation with China to match with excellent existing political and diplomatic ties between the two countries.
He said while Zimbabwe celebrates some of the bilateral economic cooperation, which has brought forth projects such as the Kariba South Extension Power Plant, the Victoria Falls Airport and many others, it was Zimbabwe’s view that more could be done to bring the level of economic cooperation to that of political and diplomatic relations between Zimbabwe and China.
“We have the political will. The opportunities are there,” said the Acting President. On to the two countries’ cooperation on other fronts, Acting President Chiwenga said Zimbabwe welcomed China’s stance against Western sanctions on Zimbabwe.
He said in that regard, Zimbabwe negates the foreign and familiar hand causing unending disturbances and lawlessness in Hong Kong. He disclosed that. Zimbabwe
will also support China on issues of common interest such as human rights, climate change and the One China Policy(OCP).
On the United Nations Security Council reform, Acting President Chiwenga said Zimbabwe will continue to be guided by the Common African Position. He also acknowledged the humanitarian support extended to Zimbabwe by China, especially during the aftermath of Cyclone Idai.
Speaking at the same occasion, Minister Wang Yi noted the bilateral relations between China and Zimbabwe for the past 40 years had become “stronger and trustworthy”.
“We have become stronger friends and we have deeper trust in each other. We have become even more steadfast in our commitment to bilateral cooperation.”
Mr. Wang said, he was looking forward to meeting President Mnangagwa to hear from him how the two countries can make their economic cooperation a success.
For New Africa Business News Abdul Rahman Suagibu Reports, Africa Correspondent