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Ambassador says China-Sierra Leone cooperation marks new era

By Abu Bakarr Kargbo (People's Daily Online)    14:18, September 30, 2018

Ambassador Wu Peng, addressing his audience at the Bintumani Hotel Conference Auditorium on Friday

Ambassador of the People’s Republic of China to the Republic of Sierra Leone has stated that the success of the Forum on China–Africa Cooperation (FOCAC) Beijing Summit and President Maada Bio’s state visit to China marked a new era of China-Africa and China-Sierra Leone cooperation.

Speaking at celebration of the 69th anniversary of the founding of the People’s Republic of China, Ambassador Wu Peng said his country stands ready to cooperate with Sierra Leone to strategically dock President Bio’s New Direction agenda with China’s development plan, and deepen cooperation with FOCAC and the Belt and Road Initiative, so as to inject new impetus into the development of the two countries and bring tangible benefits to the two nations.

As China marks its 40th anniversary of reform and opening up this year, the Chinese government has introduced a host of major steps to deepen reform, expand opening-up and advance innovation, aiming at promoting both China’s own development and global growth. In the first half of 2018, China’s economy expanded by 6.8%, staying within the medium-high growth range of 6.7% - 6.9% for 12 quarters in a row. On the whole, the Chinese economy has stayed on track of steady progress, with growing new drivers and sound fundamentals.

Minister Alpha Timbo, thanking and congratulating China

“Together with China’s rapid development, China-Africa and China-Sierra Leone friendship is developing at an increasingly faster pace,” Wu said, adding that for the fact that the two countries' people share common historical experience, development tasks, and political aspiration, they are united together, forging ahead hand in hand and working to build a community with shared future.

During President Bio’s visit to China, he received assurances from Chinese President Xi Jinping, who said China cherishes the traditional friendship with Sierra Leone. He noted that since the establishment of diplomatic ties 47 years ago, the two countries have already been good partners and stood together through good and bad times. President Xi announced that China would expand cooperation with Sierra Leone in infrastructure construction, agriculture, fisheries, health care, education, and security capacity building, and continue to support each other in the multilateral arena.

Speaking on behalf of the government of Sierra Leone, the Acting Minister of Foreign Affairs Alpha Timbo said the economic, social, political and technical support of China to the people of his country cannot be over emphasized.

Invited dignitaries present at the celebration

He named the provision of electricity, scholarships for Sierra Leonean students to study in China, building and equipping the 34 Military Hospital with state of the art microbiology laboratory, provision of specialized training and equipment for Republic of Sierra Leone Armed Forces (RSLAF), US$300, 000 support for the refurbishment of the main conference room of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and International Cooperation, support for the rehabilitation of Sierra Leone Parliament, financial and logistical support following the 14th August 2017 mudslide and flooding in Freetown, and the ongoing rehabilitation of the national stadium; as great supports that China has provided to Sierra Leone in recent years.

The Minister, who congratulated the People’s Republic of China on their national day celebration, also thanked and assured the government of China of his government's continued partnership which Sierra Leone needs at this time for its development under President Maada Bio’s New Direction. The event was climaxed with a musical performance by Chinese and Sierra Leoneans. 

(For the latest China news, Please follow People's Daily on Twitter and Facebook)(Web editor: Bianji, Liang Jun)

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