Zim govt commits to deepening cooperation with China

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Zimbabwe on Wednesday vowed to deepen bilateral cooperation with China to ensure that it attains its vision of becoming a middle income economy by 2030.

Defence Minister Oppah Muchinguri-Kashiri said the infrastructure development support from China was contributing immensely to the economic transformation of the southern African nation.

Muchinguri-Kashiri was speaking at a reception to mark the 70th anniversary of the founding of China held by the Chinese Embassy in Harare.

She said the infrastructure development projects in energy, transport and ICT sectors, among others, were key to Zimbabwe’s economic transformation.

“These projects are critical to the economic transformation of Zimbabwe and will immensely contribute to the attainment of our vision of becoming a middle-income economy by 2030. We are ready to move with our Chinese friends on that development trajectory,” said Muchinguri-Kashiri.

She said Zimbabwe values its friendship with China, which is based on mutual trust, and will continue to support China’s core interests, including one-China principle.

Zimbabwe was open for more Chinese investment as it continues to implement economic reforms to improve the business and investment climate, the minister said.

“We have witnessed in the past few years increased participation in our economy by Chinese companies,” she said.

She also said Zimbabwe will not pay heed to critics who denigrate China’s cooperation with Africa and Zimbabwe, noting that Zimbabwe knows what is good and right for itself.

Speaking at the same occasion, Chinese ambassador Guo Shaochun said over the past nearly four decades of diplomatic relations, China and Zimbabwe have developed pragmatic cooperation with rich achievements in multiple forms, including aid, trade, investment, financing, and in a wide range of areas such as infrastructure, industry, agriculture and mining.

“Our practical cooperation was marked by a series of mega projects like the Victoria Falls International Airport expansion, the Mugabe International Airport expansion, the Kariba-South power plant expansion, the Hwange thermal power station expansion and the New Parliament building Project. These projects are a vivid reflection of our commitment to Zimbabwe, and the high importance we attach to Zimbabwe,” said Guo.

He said over the past 39 years, Zimbabwe-China relations had grown from strength to strength, elevating their bilateral relations to a comprehensive strategic and long-term partnership of cooperation in 2018.

“During the past nearly four decades, China and Zimbabwe enjoyed rock-solid political trust. China strongly supported Zimbabwe’s struggle for national liberation against colonialism and racism. After Zimbabwe’s independence, we continue supporting Zimbabwe standing up to bullies by foreign powers,” said Guo.