Chinese State Councilor and Foreign Minister Wang Yi has said China stands ready to strengthen practical cooperation with Ethiopia in various fields and take the opportunity of the upcoming meeting of the Forum on China-Africa Cooperation (FOCAC) to inject new impetus into China-Africa cooperation.
Its should be noted that, the two countries have had ties for several decades. in January 1964, Chinese premier then Zhou Enlai visited Ethiopia and the Ethiopian emperor Haile Selassie also visited Beijing in October 1971 where he was received by Mao Zedong. Meanwhile, in May 1996 Chinese president Jiang Zemin also visited the country.
In December 2003, Chinese premier Wen Jiabao visited Ethiopia to attend the opening of the China-Africa Cooperation Forum. Furthermore, in December 2004, the heads of the Ethiopian and Chinese legislatures met in Beijing and in a joint statement said that the two counties wish to expand all aspects of cooperation. As these established relationships continued to thrive over the years, in May 2007, China’s Assistant Minister of Commerce Wang Chao visited Addis Ababa and signed a debt relief agreement worth US$18.5 million.
In February 2008, the Chinese minister of construction met his counterpart in Addis Ababa, and reemphasized the commitment of the two governments to cooperation. The Ethiopian minister welcomed the involvement of Chinese construction companies in improving Ethiopian infrastructure.
This diplomatic relationship was furthered in November 2008 where the Agreements between the two countries include Agreement for Economic and Technological Cooperation, Trade Agreement and Trade Protocol, In May 2009 the two countries signed an agreement to eliminate double taxation, expected to boost trade and investment.
Following a phone conversation with Ethiopian Deputy Prime Minister and Foreign Minister Demeke Mekonnen, Wang said China and Ethiopia are each other’s comprehensive strategic cooperative partners, and bilateral relations have gone through tests and become stronger over time.
In spite of the COVID-19 pandemic, the two countries have supported each other and deepened their friendship, Wang said, adding that China is ready to continue close coordination and cooperation with Ethiopia in international affairs and safeguard the common interests of the two countries and other developing countries.
Wang said that China firmly supports Ethiopia’s efforts to safeguard national sovereignty and independence, believes that the Ethiopian government has the capacity and wisdom to properly handle its internal affairs, and will continue to support the Ethiopian people in realizing national peace, stability, development and prosperity.
According to Wang, China has maintained its grounds that it will adhere to its consistent position and oppose external forces interfering in Ethiopia’s internal affairs under the pretext of human rights.
China hopes that the international community will support the position of the Ethiopian federal government on realizing a comprehensive and lasting ceasefire, and effectively promoting its national reconciliation.
Chinese State Councilor and Foreign Minister Wang Yi said that the United States is now trying to discredit China in order to shift its responsibility for failure in fighting the epidemic at home. In particular, he noted, the U.S. intelligence community is speeding up the fabrication of a so-called origins tracing report in a bid to pin the blame on China.
He further expressed belief that the international community, including Ethiopia, will see through the nature of the U.S. move, continue to take an objective and just position, clearly oppose the malicious attempt to politicize COVID-19 origins tracing, and jointly maintain the sound momentum of international solidarity against the epidemic.
Demeke appreciated China’s strong support to his country in fighting against coronavirus, saying Ethiopia is committed to advancing the China-Ethiopia comprehensive strategic cooperative partnership to a new level.
Ethiopia, like China, firmly opposes Western interference in other countries’ internal affairs under the excuse of human rights, he said, adding that his country believes that origins tracing should not be politicized and must be carried out in accordance with science.
Ethiopia is looking forward to the new session of the FOCAC, and will make full use of the platform to enrich bilateral relations. The two sides also exchanged views on other issues of common concerns.
Share the news