China to enhance economic ties Foreign Affairs and International Trade Minister Ambassador Frederick Shava greets Chinese State Councillor and Foreign Minister Qin Gang in Beijing yesterday.

Wallace Ruzvidzo-Herald Reporter

ZIMBABWE is committed to enhancing cooperation with China for the mutual benefit of both countries’ people, Foreign Affairs and International Trade Minister Ambassador Frederick Shava has said.

Speaking following his meeting with Chinese State Councillor and Minister of Foreign Affairs Qin Gang yesterday, Minister Shava said Harare was ready to increase cooperation with Beijing on all fronts, on the back of excellent relations between the two. 

He said discussions with Mr Qin had culminated in the exchange of constructive ideas and views which would surely benefit the two nations.

“Over the past few years, especially in the 2nd Republic under the stewardship of the President of the Republic of Zimbabwe, His Excellency Cde Dr Emmerson Mnangagwa, and the Chinese President, His Excellency Xi Jinping, the bilateral relations between Zimbabwe and China have soared to greater heights, reflecting the elevation of the Status of the bilateral relations to the Comprehensive Strategic Partnership in April 2018.

“Since this elevation, Zimbabwe has witnessed increased investments by the Chinese business community in many areas, including mining, agriculture, energy and manufacturing sectors,” he said.

Ambassador Shava said Harare and Beijing had agreed to exploit trade and economic cooperation as there was vast potential between the two countries.

“We both concurred on the need to boost trade and economic cooperation between our two countries, including enhancing private sector partnerships.” 

“Zimbabwe and China signed a Protocol to facilitate the export of Zimbabwean citrus to China and we would like to broaden this list to include macadamia nuts, sesame seeds, blue berries, avocados, dried chillies and other agricultural products. The relevant Zimbabwean authorities are currently engaging their Chinese counterparts on broadening of the products portfolio,” he said.

“We discussed the broadening of cooperation in the tourism and hospitality industry. Zimbabwe recently received the first batch of a group of Chinese tourists in the post-Covid pandemic era earlier this month. I expressed hope that such cooperation would continue to grow into the foreseeable future.”

He apprised his Chinese counterpart on the impending general elections and stressed Government’s commitment to ensuring free, fair and transparent polls.

“I also took the opportunity to inform my colleague and counterpart on the preparations for the forthcoming harmonized elections.

“I think we all can attest that Zimbabwe is very peaceful and stable. I envisage that this atmosphere will subsist during the pre- and post-election period.

“I also noted the cordial relations between the ruling party ZANU-PF and the Communist Party of China (CPC),” he said.

Mr Qin said China was ready to work with Zimbabwe to ensure the continued development of bilateral ties.

“You are a good friend of ours and bilateral relations have been stable, healthy and great since we established diplomatic ties over four decades ago,” he said.

Ambassador Shava will be addressing the Zimbabwe-China Business Forum scheduled to start today and run for three days.

The Business Forum is meant to provide a platform for the creation of linkages through business-to-business interactions between Zimbabwe and China.

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