African countries play an increasingly important role in international affairs as they have actively participated in the South-South cooperation and worked for the North-South dialogue, according to China's African Policy Paper issued Thursday in Beijing.
It said Africa has a long history, vast expanse of land, rich natural resources and huge potential for development. After long years of struggle, the African people freed themselves from colonial rule, wiped out apartheid, won independence and emancipation, thus making significant contribution to the progress of civilization.
Following their independence, it said, countries in Africa have been conscientiously exploring a road to development suited to their national conditions and seeking peace, stability and development by joint efforts.
Thanks to the concerted efforts of African countries and the Organization of African Unity (OAU)/the African Union (AU), the political situation in Africa has been stable on the whole, regional conflicts are being gradually resolved and economy has been growing for years, the paper said.
The New Partnership for Africa Development (NEPAD) has drawn up an encouraging picture of African rejuvenation and development, according to the paper.
It said Africa still faces many challenges on its road of development.
However, the paper said, with the persistent efforts of African countries and the continuous support of the international community, Africa will surely surmount difficulties and achieve rejuvenation in the new century.
This is the first time for the Chinese government to issue a paper elaborating its policy towards Africa.
The paper, composed of more than 3,000 English words, is divided into six parts, including Africa's position and role, China's relations with Africa, China's African policy, Enhancing all-round cooperation between China and Africa, Forum on China-Africa Cooperation and its follow-up actions, China's relations with African regional organizations.