Background InformationChina has become a major player in the field of South-South Cooperation with large number of projects mainly focused in African and Asian development as to some Latin America and Caribbean countries. The country does not have a specific agency to coordinate technical cooperation and the issue is dealt mostly by the Ministry of Finance oriented by the State Council and in collaboration with related ministries. The key area of actions of China in South-South Cooperation includes agriculture, infrastructure, energy, mining, trade and industry, education, health and medicine, science and technology and information services. One of most important agreements of cooperation is the FOCAC – China Africa Forum for Cooperation. China plays a key role in areas such as agriculture and infrastructure in particular with ASEAN countries and Central Asia countries and on the Shanghai Cooperation Organization including central Asia countries. China is a key donor of the Voluntary Trust Fund for South-South Cooperation since its establishment reinforcing its commitments towards cooperation among developing countries. The country is also important contributor to the FAO South-South Cooperation Special Programme for Food Security.
Examples of Key Projects of China
||Since 2000 the country has launched the China Africa Forum for Cooperation (FOCAC) which became the heart of China’s cooperation with the African continent as to NEPAD – New Partnership for African Development. At the III Forum on China-Africa Cooperation held in Beijing in 2006, the Chinese government announced the doubling of Chinese financial aid towards Africa from 2006 to 2009. In the regional context.
||China is one of key member states of the Shanghai Cooperation Organisation (SCO), a permanent intergovernmental organisation created in 2001 in Shanghai (China) and integrating the Republic of Kazakhstan, the People’s Republic of China, the Kyrgyz Republic, the Russian Federation, the Republic of Tajikistan and the Republic of Uzbekistan. The SCO is the successor of the Shanghai Five mechanism created in 1996 for political, security and cooperation dialogue. The main goals of the SCO are strengthening mutual confidence and good-neighbourly relations among the member countries; promoting their effective cooperation in politics, trade and economy, science and technology, culture as well as education, energy, transportation, tourism, environmental protection and other fields; making joint efforts to maintain and ensure peace, security and stability in the region, to move towards the establishment of a new, democratic, just and rational political and economic international order.
||China has cooperated considerably in the field of health benefiting a large number of countries in particular in Africa. The first cooperation project backs to 1963 with Algeria and since than, most of African nations have benefited from the programmes. The projects cover areas such as construction of hospitals, anti-disease centres, sending of medical workers, support for treatment of diseases, and training among others. The cooperation with Africa also includes prevention and treatment of HIV/AIDS, malaria, tuberculosis, Ebola, Chikungunya, avian influenza and other communicable diseases and in the fields of quarantine and public health emergency response mechanism. In Sierra Leone for example, China gaves assistance to build a 100-bed hospital in Freetown; an anti-malaria centre and education financing. In Lesotho for example, China has send its first medical team in 1997 and since then cooperation has continued and mostly the countries signed agreement to cooperate on the use of Chinese herbal medicines as HIV/AIDS treatments, doctor training and telemedicine. With Asean countries China cooperates in areas such as the controlling of Highly Pathogenic Avian Influenza (HPAI).
||China has become one of the largest consumers market for agricultural products from developing countries in the last few years which makes one of most important issues of economic cooperation. China has a valuable historic of technical cooperation on the field of agriculture and rural assistance and development with Africa in particular. The country is one of the most activities on the FAO Special Programme for Food Security in the context of South-South Cooperation with projects implemented in Gabon, Sierra Leone, Caribbean Islands, Ethiopia, Bangladesh, Ghana, among others. Projects have included the sending of agricultural technicians, training of local agricultural technicians, construction of agricultural schools and general infrastructure such as projects of irrigation, roads. In Angola, for example, over 120 thousand farmers from 60 farming associations and cooperatives are benefiting from the construction of a dam and irrigation channel and training of agricultural technicians. Bangladesh, agricultural experts are working since 2001 in a project on hybrid rice to increase food production and realize food sufficiency in the South-Asian country.
|Education and training
||China has an intensive programme of cooperation in the area of education and training in particular in the African continent since long data and in particular in the area of agriculture. In 2000, China has set up an African Human Resources Development Fund exclusively for African personnel training with training courses or programmes of diverse forms for Africa under this special fund. At the last summit of the FOCAC Beijing 2006 it was agreed to send 100 senior Chinese agricultural experts to Africa and to set up 10 agricultural demonstration sites in Africa and 100 rural schools and to double scholarships for the continent. China has agreed also to increase the number of Chinese government scholarships to African students from the current 2,000 per year to 4,000 per year by 2009. Chinese experts have trained technical persons for many African countries from Uganda to Kenya, Rwanda, Tanzania, Zambia, the Sudan and the Democratic Republic of the Congo among others.
||China has organizes training courses and seminars for public administration in a range of activities. Training courses for young and mid-aged diplomats have benefited many officials from African countries. China also organized study-tours for high-ranking African diplomats to visit China and exchange experiences. In the field of environment another example is the training course on water pollution and water resources conservation for African senior environment officials from 19 African countries. China has trained over 10,000 African professionals in various fields under the African Human Resources Development Fund (AHRDF).
|Science and Technology
||The Ministry of Science and Technology of China has a Department for International Cooperation responsible to deal with this subject and so far, China has cooperated with 152 countries in this specific field. In 2004, China launched 31 international seminars dedicated to developing nations, covering a variety of topics such as agriculture, energy, CAD, environment protection, medicine and etc. we have made details of these events available in this brochure and welcome the participate of friends from different countries for their own interests and needs. The China-Brazil project CBERS, as commented previously (in the Brazil case) is one of most valuable examples of Chinese cooperation on the area of science and technology. Another example is the cooperation with South Africa which has increased significantly since 1998 in areas such as biotechnology, energy, research and development of municipal bridge management information system, innovative pavement materials technology among others. In Mozambique, China supports the agricultural research and technology transfer centre at Umbeluzi and a Technology Park in Moamba, both in Maputo province; pledged to build Agricultural Technology Centre.
||China’s cooperation projects on environmental field focuses on biodiversity, policy-making and legislation on environmental protection. Recently China has pledged to enhance cooperation with African countries on environmental protection involving the areas just mentioned above. Chinese government provides training programs on environmental protection for environmental officials and specialists form African countries, under the African Human Resources Development Fund of the Forum on China-Africa Cooperation. In South Africa, China agreed the establishment the South Africa-China Water Resources Sectoral Commission to strengthen the exchange and cooperation in rural water supply and capacity building. Other areas benefiting from environmental cooperation from China are Asia, especially Central Asian and some Latin American countries.
||A large number of infrastructure projects have been carried out by China in schemes under credit lines with reduced loan and financing. These projects have been implemented in many African and Asian countries and include construction of roads, dams, reconstructing water supply system; irrigation systems among others. China gives assistance in the construction of the Tanzania-Zambia Railway making its first ever participation in undertaking in overseas aid items. This 1860-kilometer long rail-road starts from Dar es Salaam in the East Which is the capital of Tanzania and ends in Kapri Mposhi in Zambia in the West. Chinese experts and engineering technicians did all the work of exploration, survey and designing and they also assisted the Tanzania and Zambia governments to organize the execution of the construction. The Tanzania-Zambia railway has become a major truck line of communication linking the two countries. In Southeast Asia, China is contributing to build up the western part of China, particularly Yunnan province, and develop the Greater Mekong. Many projects have been implemented including major road networks of 1.800 km from Kunming to Bangkok passing through Laos and from Danang in Vietnam to Moulmein on the Burma coast.
||China has provided development assistance to African countries over many years and that it has reduced and cancelled part of the government debt owed to China by heavily indebted poor countries (HIPCs) and least developed countries (LDCs) in Africa that has become mature. The Chinese Government decided to provide US$3 billion of preferential loans and US$2 billion preferential export buyer's credit to African countries in the next three years on more favourable terms, more so for HIPCs and LDCs in Africa. China has trained over 10,000 African professionals in various fields under the African Human Resources Development Fund (AHRDF).
||Trade has been one important instruments of Chinese cooperation for development as the country have become a major consumer market for diverse range of products coming from the developing world. Chinese goods have trasnformed Southeast Asia with the example of motor scooters, Chinese televisions and satellites dishes cheaper which are playing a key role in development on the region because of their accessible price. China has signed large number of bilateral and regional agreements benefiting increase on trade with developing countries, in particular the case of ASEAN and African Union. The country has implemented the policy of zero duty trade for many least developed countries and debt relief for 31 of the highly indebted nations of Africa. In Africa, China pledged to further open up its market to Africa, increase from 190 to over 440 the number of export items to China eligible for zero-tariff treatment from the least developed countries in Africa having diplomatic relations with China and launch bilateral negotiations with countries concerned for the early conclusion and implementation of related agreements. The country has also agreed to strengthen cooperation in customs, taxation, inspection and quarantine to facilitate healthy and orderly growth of China-Africa trade among others.
Source: : Ministry of Foreign Affairs
of People’s Republic of China
Homepages: http://www.fmprc.gov.cn/eng and http://english.gov.cn/