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China says ready to hand over multi-mln USD conference building to Malawi

(Xinhua)

09:58, April 03, 2012

LILONGWE, April 2 (Xinhua) -- A Chinese official said on Monday that China is ready to hand over to the Malawian government the 90- million-USD conference building built with Chinese aid loan in the country's capital of Lilongwe.

Pan Hejun, Chinese Ambassador to Malawi, told Xinhua that the 1, 500-seat Malawi International Conference Center project, which is affiliated with a 130-room business hotel, a 1,000-seat dining hall and the 170,000-square meter presidential villas, is expected to be a great boost for the Malawian image in the international community.

The conference building is scheduled to host participants of the upcoming African Union summit in July in Lilongwe.

"The involvement of the Malawian workers in the construction has also helped to train the local labor force," Pan said.

At its peak, the construction project involved more than 900 local Malawian workers, according to Pei Hailiang, engineer and deputy project manager of the project with Shanghai Construction Group.

Pei said the project, with coverage of 32,000 square meters, started in May 2010. At the request of the Malawian government, it wrapped up 10 months in advance of its original 30 months' schedule.

"No safety incidents or labor conflicts are involved in the construction of the project which has passed the acceptance inspection by the Malawi government," said Pei. "We are waiting for the Malawi government to take over the project."

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