Dar es Salaam. President Samia Suluhu Hassan on Thursday said that Tanzania will continue to provide China with “firm support” on issues concerning China’s core interests such as Taiwan, Xinjiang and Hong Kong.
The Tanzanian leader is currently visiting China at the invitation of the Asian nation’s President Xi Jinping, becoming the first African leader to visit the world’s most populous country since the conclusion of the 20th National Congress of the Communist Party of China.
On the afternoon of November 3, 2022, President Xi Jinping held talks at the Great Hall of the People with President Samia which concentrated on how the two historical allies could upgrade China-Tanzania relations to “a comprehensive strategic partnership of cooperation,” according to a joint communiqué released on Thursday.
“[Our aim is] to become a model of Africa-China relations in the new era,” President Samia told her host. “Tanzania will continue to provide China with firm support on issues concerning China’s core interests such as Taiwan, Xinjiang and Hong Kong.”
Taiwan, Xinjiang and Hong Kong are thorns in the flesh of Chinese authorities and are some of the key issues that have been putting the socialist country against other world nations as well as human rights organisations.
China considers Taiwan and Hong Kong part of its territory despite movements from the two islands demanding to be autonomous. In Xinjiang, China has been criticised over alleged human rights violations in the province against the Uyghurs and other predominantly Muslim minorities.
A United Nations report released in August said that “serious human rights violations have been committed” in the region in northwest China. The Chinese government has however been rejecting those allegations, describing them as “slanderous attacks.”
Upon her arrival in China on Thursday, a 21-gun salute was fired in Tiananmen Square, 17 soldiers of salute lined up on both sides of the red carpet on the steps, and trumpeters sounded their horns to welcome the guests.
President Samia and her host boarded the reviewing stand, and the military band played the national anthems of China and Tanzania. Accompanied by Xi Jinping, Samia reviewed the honour guard of the Chinese People’s Liberation Army and watched the breakdown.
Sincerity and amity
President Xi Jinping informed his Tanzanian counterpart that China’s cooperation with African countries needs to adhere to the concept of sincerity and amity adding that this has become the basic policy concept guiding China’s solidarity and cooperation with developing countries.
“Under the new circumstances, developing China-Tanzania relations not only conforms to the common and long-term interests of the two countries but also is of great significance to advancing the building of a China-Africa community with a shared future in the new era,” Xi, who has been the paramount leader of China since 2012, said.
He said that China firmly supports Tanzania in safeguarding its sovereignty, security and development interests, and firmly supports Tanzania in exploring a development path that suits its national conditions.
“Modernization does not equal Westernization,” President Xi noted. “China has explored a development path that suits China’s national conditions. Chinese-style modernization takes root in China, is in line with China’s reality, and has Chinese characteristics.”
Xi Jinping stressed that China has always viewed China-Tanzania relations from a strategic perspective and has always been a trusted friend of Tanzania.
“China is willing to continue to expand the import of Tanzanian speciality products, support Chinese enterprises to invest in Tanzania, and provide assistance within its capacity for Tanzania’s economic and social development,” he said. “China is willing to exchange experience and practices of rural revitalization with Tanzania and support the development of people’s livelihood in Tanzania.”
True and most important friend
On her part, President Samia said that Tanzania regards China as its true and most important friend, and is willing to be a partner worthy of China’s trust forever.
“Together with China, taking the opportunity of establishing a comprehensive strategic cooperative partnership, we will strengthen practical cooperation in various fields and elevate Tanzania-China relations to a new height,” she pointed out.
She said that Tanzania will continue to actively participate in and support the development of the Forum on China-Africa Cooperation, describing it as “very timely and conducive to solving the current global challenges.”
Samia said that Tanzania is willing to work with China to actively implement it and promote the building of a community with a shared future for mankind.
The two heads of state agreed to maintain the momentum of high-level exchanges and dialogues, and intensify exchanges and cooperation at all levels between the local governments, legislative bodies and political parties of the two countries, reads the communiqué.
They also agreed to expand the scale of bilateral trade, improve the level of bilateral economic and trade cooperation, deepen the high-quality joint construction of the ‘Belt and Road’ initiative, promote cooperation in infrastructure projects, promote industrial docking and production capacity cooperation, and expand mutually beneficial cooperation in processing and manufacturing, green development, digital economy and other fields.
They also agreed to expand people-to-people and cultural exchanges, hold the China-Tanzania Tourism and Culture Year at an appropriate time, promote exchanges between scholars and media of the two countries, and inherit and promote the friendship between the two peoples.
Tanzania and China also agreed to further close international and multilateral coordination, strengthen communication and cooperation on important issues such as climate change and the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development, and safeguard international fairness and justice and the common interests of both sides.
After the talks, the two heads of state jointly witnessed the signing of bilateral cooperation documents on trade, investment, development cooperation, digital economy, green development, and blue economy, according to the communiqué.