China’s Steady Economy Growth Brings Broad Prospects for Sino-Salone Cooperation

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By: Du Zijun

Economic and Commercial Counsellor

Chinese Embassy in Sierra Leone

With the complicated international situation, the world economic growth has significantly slowed down since the beginning of 2022. Meanwhile, China’s economy remains resilient with a strong material base accumulated over the years and the advantage of a large market size. Under the strong leadership of the Communist Party of China (CPC) with Comrade Xi Jinping as the core, China has effectively coordinated epidemic prevention and control, economic and social development, and made new achievements in economic and social development. In the first three quarters, China’s economy achieved positive growth, with a GDP of 87,026.9 billion yuan, a year-on-year increase of 3% at constant prices. The commodity price was generally stable, and the employment situation continued to improve. China’s efforts to attract investment continued to increase, and foreign trade registered overall growth.

As the changes of the times and the epidemic of the century have superimposed each other, the development gap between developed and developing countries continues to widen. As the largest developing country in the world, China has similar historical circumstances to the vast number of African countries, including Sierra Leone. China understands the aspirations of developing countries for peace and development and is ready to join hands with them to meet the global challenges. H.E. President Xi Jinping put forward the Global Development Initiative (GDI), which aims to promote the international community to form a joint force, focus on development, contribute Chinese solutions and Chinese wisdom to solve development problems and realize the United Nations 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development as scheduled, and also calibrate the direction for building a community with a shared future for mankind. The GDI advocates development in a prominent position in the global macro policy framework, strengthening policy coordination among major economies, building a more equal and balanced global partnership for development. The GDI supports developing countries, especially vulnerable countries, through debt relief, development assistance, and other means. Over the past 50 years, China has implemented thousands of programs for more than 160 developing countries, carried out tens of thousands of capacity-building projects, and provided more than 400,000 personnel training, contributing to global development.

China welcomes all countries in the world to make full use of its development dividend, through continuous expansion of mutual opening and cooperation in various fields such as trade, investment, and industry. China will promote high-quality construction of the “Belt and Road” to promote the recovery of the world economy.

Sierra Leone has a superior geographical location and rich minerals, fishery, tourism and other resources. In recent years, Sierra Leone has shaken off the haze of civil war, overcome the impact of the Ebola and COVID-19 epidemic, and is working hard to seek economic and social development. Since the establishment of diplomatic relations between the two countries 51 years ago, China and Sierra Leone have always been sincere and friendly, treating each other as equals, cooperating for mutual benefit, and the two sides have become reliable friends and partners. The cooperation between the two countries in human resources development, education, agriculture, public health, energy, communications, infrastructure construction and other areas has achieved numerous results. Since 2018, China has completed nearly 20 aid projects for Sierra Leone, and more than 10 other projects are either going on or are in discussion. Over the years, under the Chinese Government Scholarship Program, more than 1000 Sierra Leonean students have been funded to study in China, and over 5100 Sierra Leoneans from all walks of life have been invited to China for short-term training or exchange programs. China has donated 700,000 doses of COVID-19 vaccine and eight rounds anti-pandemic material assistance to Sierra Leone.

Against the troubled times, the fundamentals of China’s strong economic resilience, great potential and long-term improvement remain unchanged. China’s comprehensive strength has been continuously enhanced, with huge development potential and strong innovation and upgrading capabilities. China will deepen high-level opening up and adhere to free trade and fair trade so as to provide a strong driving force for the recovery of the world economy. China will continue to work closely with Sierra Leone and other African countries, adhere to genuine multilateralism, maintain the UN-centered international system, and safeguard the common interests of developing countries. China will, as always, uphold the principle of sincerity, real Results, affinity, and good faith while working with Sierra Leone. China will talk and do instead of making empty promises. China will respect the situation of Sierra Leonen instead of interfering with its internal affairs.

To sum up, China’s steady economic growth will bring broad prospects for Sino-Salone cooperation. As we are embracing the new era, we have full confidence of building a closer and stronger partnership between China and Sierra Leone.

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