writers Cao Kai, Wang Xiaopeng and Li Wei WUHAN China
(Xinhua) -- If not for the
arrival of Chinese scientists, Meshack Mutevu would
still be living in a house with a metal roof and mud
walls like his forefathers, subsisting on a few mango
trees and raising goats.
The life of the
44-year-old Kenyan began to change when scientists from
the Sino-Africa Joint Research Center (SAJOREC) with the
Chinese Academy of Sciences (CAS) discovered that the
local moringa was rich in selenium and had great market
potential due to its health benefits after a farm
produce investigation in 2015.
In partnership with SAJOREC, Botanic Diamond, a
Kenya-based company run by Chinese, offered free seeds
and technical guidance to local residents and procured
the moringa after it was harvested.
Mutevu planted over 200 moringa trees, which earned
him an annual income of more than 10,000 U.S. dollars,
and enabled him to build a 400-square-meter villa in
just two years.
"Sino-Africa cooperation should not stay in
laboratories and academic papers," said Wang Qingfeng,
director of SAJOREC.
"The fundamental research should be integrated into
Wang said the center has transformed a number of
Kenyan plants, including baobab and toothbrush trees,
into medicinal teas, essential oils, and toothpaste,
adding that many Kenyan farmers can lift themselves out
of poverty by planting these plants.
"The combination of the CAS’s advantages in
technology and private companies’ grasp of the market
will benefit more ordinary Kenyan households," said Cui
Chaojie, chairman of Botanic Diamond, which has
developed 15 products out of 11 Kenyan plants.
Cui said he plans to visit Shanghai in November to
attend the China International Import Expo, trying to
tap the lucrative Chinese market with quality African
Since its establishment in 2013, SAJOREC has put
forward more than 45 joint research programs focusing on
biodiversity investigation, pathogenic microorganism
detection, geographic science and remote sensing,
high-yield crop cultivation demonstration as well as
land and water resources management.
"The fact that China has managed to lift millions of
its citizens out of poverty in an unprecedented time
frame using improved agricultural, scientific and
technological approaches is a clear indication that
there is room for close cooperation between China and
Africa for the improvement of African lives," said
Gituru Robert Wahiti, co-director of SAJOREC.
To ease food shortages in Africa, SAJOREC has been
introducing Chinese crop varieties into Africa. Trial
plantings of wheat, rice, corn, sweet sorghum and grapes
in Kenya, Ethiopia, Uganda and other countries have
shown promising results.
In order to help solve the issues of drought and
water pollution which hinders the economic development
of African countries, SAJOREC’s scientists have
completed an investigation and assessment of the water
quality in Tanzanian cities.
They are also preparing a project on sustainable
usage and management of key water towers in Kenya to
create a national report on the sanitation management
and sustainable usage of the country’s drinking water.
"Teaching one to fish is better than giving him fish.
China has been helping African countries to improve
their self-development capabilities as a new way of
aid," said Li Yin, deputy head of the CAS International
Teresiah Muciku Mungai, a doctoral student currently
studying at the CAS Wuhan Botanical Garden, is
researching soil samples taken back from Kenyan
residential compounds, schools and public spaces with
the state-of-the-art equipment in the laboratory.
"We should learn from China’s experiences and also
lessons in economic development and environmental
protection," said the 27-year-old Kenyan.
The technology cooperation between China and African
counties is green and sustainable and will create new
room for future cooperation, said Liu Hongwu, head of
the African Studies Institute of Zhejiang Normal
Liu called for more policies and financial incentives
to encourage Chinese universities and scientific
institutions to undertake technology cooperation in
Facts and Figures:
China-Africa ties: cooperation for shared future
BEIJING China (Xinhua) --
The 2018 Beijing Summit of the Forum on China-Africa
Cooperation (FOCAC), scheduled for Sept. 3 and 4, is
expected to set a new path for a higher level of
Since 2000 when the FOCAC was formally founded,
especially since the 2006 Beijing summit and the 2015
Johannesburg summit of FOCAC, China and Africa have seen
closer ties in various respects, producing win-win
results toward the goal of building an even stronger
community with a shared future.
Here are key facts and figures worth knowing to
better understand the China-Africa cooperation:
COMPREHENSIVE STRATEGIC AND CO-OPERATIVE
PARTNERSHIP: Chinese President Xi Jinping announced
at the Johannesburg summit that he and African
leaders had reached a unanimous consensus on lifting
China-Africa relations to a comprehensive strategic
and cooperative partnership.
Earlier in 2013, during his first visit to Africa
since taking office as Chinese president, Xi expounded
on China’s Africa policy, noting that China adheres to
the principles of sincerity, practical results, affinity
and good faith and upholds the values of friendship,
justice and shared interests.
TRADE AND INVESTMENT: China’s trade with Africa
has registered fast growth.
From 2000 to 2017, the total trade volume between
China and Africa increased by 17 times.
China has been Africa’s largest trading partner for
nine consecutive years. In 2017, China’s trade with
Africa surged 14 percent year on year to 170 billion
The fast growth continued into the first half of 2018
when the trade volume jumped 16 percent to nearly 100
China’s investments into Africa surged by more than
100 times from 2000 to 2017.
In the past three years, annual Chinese direct
investment into Africa was about 3 billion dollars on
By the end of 2017, China’s investments of all kinds
into Africa totaled 100 billion dollars, covering almost
every country on the continent.
TEN COOPERATION PLANS: In 2015, China announced
10 cooperation plans for the next three years to
boost its cooperation with Africa and offered 60
billion U.S. dollars of funding support to ensure
the implementation of the initiatives.
The big package covers areas of industrialization,
agricultural modernization, infrastructure, financial
services, green development, trade and investment
facilitation, poverty reduction and public welfare,
public health, people-to-people exchanges and peace and
According to preliminary estimates, Chinese projects
completed and underway under these cooperation plans are
expected to bring the continent 30,000 km of highways,
85 million tonnes per year of harbor capacity, over 9
million tonnes per day of water-cleaning capacity and
about 20,000-megawatt power generating capacity while
creating some 900,000 local jobs.
MAJOR PROJECTS: Infrastructure construction has
been one of the priorities in China-Africa
cooperation. Last year, a 480 km China-funded
railway opened to connect Nairobi and Mombasa,
reducing traveling time between Kenya’s two biggest
cities by half and creating 46,000 jobs.
China also helped construct Africa’s first
transnational electrified rail, which provides
landlocked Ethiopia quicker access to seaport in
In July, the China-built International Free Trade
Zone in Djibouti was inaugurated, which is estimated to
handle over 7 billion dollars worth of trade in the next
FRIENDLY RELATIONS: China has established
diplomatic relations with 53 African countries.
Xi has attached great importance to China-Africa
After he was elected Chinese president in 2013 and in
2018, he both chose Africa as the destination of his
first foreign visit.
Since the 2015 Johannesburg summit, Xi has visited
Africa three times.
Nearly 30 heads of state or government from Africa
have visited or attended meetings in China.
PEOPLE-TO-PEOPLE EXCHANGES: The past few years
have witnessed an increase in cultural and
people-to-people exchanges between the two sides.
There are more than 130 pairs of sister cities
between China and Africa. Africa receives over one
million Chinese travelers every year.
At the end of 2017, there were 54 Confucius
Institutes in 39 African countries.
By the end of 2018, China is expected to train over
200,000 African professionals in various fields via
programs in Africa and is expected to train over 40,000
African officials and technicians in China.
THREE SUMMITS: Themed "China and Africa:
Toward an Even Stronger Community with a Shared
Future through Win-Win Cooperation," the
upcoming Beijing summit is the third FOCAC summit.
Various African leaders and the chairperson of the
African Union Commission will attend the summit, as
well as the United Nations Secretary-General as the
special guest and 27 international and African
regional organizations as observers.
This summit will be a significant diplomatic event
hosted by China this year, attended by the largest
number of foreign leaders, according to State Councilor
and Foreign Minister Wang Yi.
The FOCAC summit in Johannesburg was themed
"Africa-China Progressing Together: Win-Win Cooperation
for Common Development."
The first summit of FOCAC took place in Beijing in
2006, with the theme of "Friendship, Peace, Cooperation