, DAR ES SALAAM, Mar 25 – China and Tanzania agreed on Sunday to build a comprehensive cooperative partnership characterised by mutual benefit and win-win results.
The agreement was reached at a meeting between visiting Chinese President Xi Jinping and his Tanzanian counterpart Jakaya Kikwete.
Calling the East African country an old friend and a good friend of China, Xi said the two countries have maintained an all-weather friendship and China cherishes the time-tested bond with Tanzania.
Noting that both countries face the task of national development, Xi said the two sides should trust, support and help each other and pursue common development.
They should maintain contacts and exchanges, continue to support each other on core interests and major concerns, and strengthen coordination and cooperation on global and regional issues, added the Chinese president.
China, he said, is willing to continue to support Tanzania’s socioeconomic development and encourage Chinese enterprises to invest in Tanzania.
The two countries need to boost bilateral people-to-people exchanges and carry on their traditional friendship, said the Chinese president, adding that China will set up a Chinese culture centre in Tanzania.
Commenting on Africa’s overall situation, Xi said Africa is a continent full of hope and has a bright future despite the many difficulties and challenges it faces now.
For his part, Kikwete extended a warm welcome to Xi and thanked China for its long-term support and assistance for his country, pledging that his country will continue to firmly back China on major issues concerning national sovereignty and territorial integrity.
Tanzania, he said, commits itself to economic development and hopes to strengthen cooperation with China both bilaterally and under the framework of the Forum on China-Africa Cooperation in such areas as agriculture, energy, infrastructure, poverty alleviation and human resources.
After the talks, the two leaders witnessed the signing of several cooperation deals.
The meeting came hours after Xi arrived here for a state visit to Tanzania, the second leg of his maiden foreign trip as president following Russia.
In a written statement upon his arrival, Xi lauded the traditional brotherly friendship between China and Tanzania, describing the two countries as all-weather friends.
The Chinese president said his visit is aimed at consolidating the traditional friendship, charting the course for future cooperation and promoting common development.
Since China and Tanzania established diplomatic ties in the 1960s, the two countries have maintained close high-level contacts, enhanced political mutual trust and expanded practical cooperation in a wide range of areas.
China has become Tanzania’s largest trading partner and second largest source of investment.
Bilateral trade reached $2.47 billion last year, up 15.2 percent year on year.
After Tanzania, Xi will also travel to South Africa and the Republic of the Congo.
In South Africa, he will attend the fifth BRICS summit in the port city of Durban on March 26-27, the first to be held on the African continent.
The emerging-economy group of BRICS consists of Brazil, Russia, India, China and South Africa.