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Xi, Zuma eye intensive cooperation in 2014-15
April 27, 2014, 6:24 am

In an interview to CNBC in February this year, Zuma had said China is unlike former Western colonial powers who still act like Africa's master [Xinhua]

In an interview to CNBC in February this year, Zuma had said China is unlike former Western colonial powers who still act like Africa’s master [Xinhua]

Chinese President Xi Jinping reaffirmed his support for BRICS peer, South Africa on Sunday as he exchanged congratulatory messages on holding the China Year in South Africa, and the South Africa Year in China with his South African counterpart Jacob Zuma.

Such celebrations in each other’s country in 2014 and 2015, respectively, will boost China-South Africa ties, Xi said in his message to Pretoria.

The two Presidents will meet in the Brazilian city of Fortaleza in July this year during the 6th BRICS Summit.

South Africa’s bilateral trade with China saw a 32-per cent increase in 2013 over the previous year, says official data.

Two-way trade between the two countries increased from 205 billion rand (about $19.2 billion) in 2012 to 270 billion rand (about $25 billion) at the end of 2013, Trade and Industry Minister Rob Davies told South African lawmakers last month.

China “stands ready to join hands with South Africa, by seizing upon the occasion of the country year celebrations, to lift their comprehensive strategic partnership to new heights”, Xi said on Sunday.

Xi also congratulated South Africa on the 20th anniversary of its founding.

Zuma said the South Africa-China relations have achieved “leapfrog development” in recent years.

South Africa will include China in its celebration of the 20th anniversary of the ending of apartheid, which was a victory of South Africa’s democratic revolution, Zuma said.

In an interview to CNBC in February this year, Zuma had said China is unlike former Western colonial powers who still act like Africa’s master.

“The countries that have been dealing with us before, particularly old economies, they’ve dealt with us as former subjects, as former colonial subjects,” Zuma said.

“The Chinese don’t deal with us from that point of view. They deal with us as people that you must do business (with), at an equal level so to speak. It’s not the Chinese only, there are many other countries,” Zuma said. “China has come to do business, not to try to tell you what to do, what not to do. Others do.”

“Part of the reason Africa, as much as it (was) decolonized many years ago, has never developed is because the relationships are not equal,” Zuma said.

He called the BRICS (Brazil, Russia, India, China and South Africa) as the new partner with Africa.

Chinese investments in South Africa, meanwhile, continues to grow.

Between January 2003 and January 2014, a total of 38 FDI (foreign direct investment) projects were recorded. These projects represent a total capital investment of 13.33 billion rand (about $1.24 billion), which is an average investment of 350.48 million rand (about $33 million) per project.

These investments were spread across the metals; car; communications; financial services; food and tobacco; chemicals; industrial machinery; construction; engines and turbines; and transportation sectors.

 

TBP and Agencies

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