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Malawi president applauds China's aid in social development

(Xinhua)    08:27, June 15, 2015

JOHANNESBURG, June 14 – Malawi's President Peter Mutharika on Sunday applauded the efforts made by the Chinese government and the Chinese businesses in assisting Lilongwe achieve social progress in fields like health and education.

Mutharika made the comments at a press briefing on the sidelines of the African Union summit held in Johannesburg, South Africa. Responding to a question from Xinhua, he said China-Malawi relations have been developing quite well in a relatively short time of eight times since the two countries established diplomatic ties.

Mutharika said the Chinese have been investing in sanitation projects in Malawi, a critical social program for the public health, and the Chinese companies in Malawi are actively taking up their social responsibilities while engaging in economic activities in the country.

"I feel grateful for that," the president said.

Malawi was commended by UN Women as one of the ten countries that made strikes in protecting the welfare of women, particularly in lowering the rate of child marriage. Lilongwe has recently passed a law banning child marriage, raising the minimum age to 18.

Mutharika said other than legislation, education played an important role in ending child marriage and development partners like China could contribute to the improvement of education. According to UN figures, the adult literacy rate in Malawi was around 60 percent between 2008 to 2012.

China funded the creation of Malawi University of Science and Technology with a 80 million U.S. dollars loan. The university has been operating since 2014.

Mutharika said China in last October provided his government a credit line of 25 million U.S. dollars in aid for which Lilongwe officials will propose a number of social projects, particularly the building of schools to tap the fund.

(For the latest China news, Please follow People's Daily on Twitter and Facebook)(Editor:Yuan Can,Gao Yinan)

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