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China, Senegal to foster trade cooperation
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17:00, February 10, 2009

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Chinese and Senegalese governments have agreed to intensify their trade exchanges in line with important gains registered since the re-establishment of diplomatic ties between the two countries in October 2005, according to sources attending a "business forum" here Thursday of Chinese and Senegalese business professionals.

About 30 Chinese company executives accompanying the Chinese vice commerce minister Wei Jianguo, on his visit to Senegal, discussed business opportunities with their Senegalese counterparts from the public and private sectors at the chamber of commerce in the Senegalese capital's central business district.

During the forum, co-presided by Senegalese ministers for foreign affairs and commerce Cheikh Tidiane Gadio and Amadou Habibou Ndiaye respectively, Wei undertook to increase Chinese investments in Senegal, while encouraging at the same time Senegalese business people to venture into the huge Chinese market.

He said in order to improve trade balance heavily tilted in favor of China, the latter imported Senegalese products, including 7,000 tons of groundnut oil, last year.

Wei said there existed numerous opportunities to explore in such diverse fields as telecommunications, construction industry, mining industry, agricultural sector and handicraft industry.

On his part, Ndiaye said "China is one of those countries with which Senegal enjoys privileged economic and trade relations."

He noted with an overall trade exchanges of nearly 85 billion CFA (about 179 million U.S, dollars) for the year 2006, China is Senegal's 4th supplier and the 8th among this West African country's main trading partners.

Senegalese minister for foreign affairs Gadio said trade exchanges in all fields between the countries have been greatly boosted in the last two years since the resumption of diplomatic relations between Dakar and Beijing.

He also hoped that Senegalese businessmen willing to go to China will also benefit from the same hospitality treatment extended to Chinese nationals in "Teranga country" (hospitality in Senegalese dialect of Wolof).

The Chinese official arrived in Dakar Wednesday for an official two-day working visit in Senegal. (1 U.S. dollar = 475.75 CFA)

Source: Xinhua

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