Zuma says China-Africa co-operation 'win-win'

image copyrightAFP
image captionPresident Zuma thanked President Xi for upgrading China-Africa ties

South African President Jacob Zuma says closer ties between Africa and China will be a "win-win" co-operation.

In his closing remarks at a major summit between China and Africa in Johannesburg, he said both sides wanted to "prosper together".

On Friday, Chinese President Xi Jinping announced $60bn (£40bn) of assistance and loans for African states.

He said the momentum of rapid growth in Africa was "unstoppable".

He also proposed that China-Africa ties be upgraded to "a comprehensive strategic co-operative partnership".

Speaking on Saturday, Mr Xi said China firmly supported Africa's pursuit of independent sustainable development.

He said African countries should be allowed to address regional affairs in an independent way.

Analysis by Karen Allen, BBC News, Johannesburg

$60bn of Chinese assistance is indeed unprecedented. A heady cocktail of debt relief, aid and preferential loans offered by the Chinese President Xi Jinping has nailed China's commitment to African development.

But make no mistake. This is about business. China is taking a gamble on future African growth by unlocking the "bottlenecks" to development, as President Xi described them.

These include a lack of infrastructure, skilled personnel and access to funds. But what I sense African nations need more than anything else from conversations with African businessmen and potential foreign investors, is job creation for - as one minister put it - "a young population living in an aging world".

That requires investment in education and structural reforms.

Africa provides not only a huge market place for Chinese goods and services but it also offers strategic opportunities.

As China expands its international ambitions as a UN peacekeeper and a wealthy "patron" helping to bankroll African growth and "African Solutions to African Problems" what will China expect in return?

Loyalty - not least when it seeks to protect its interests when it uses its vote on the UN Security Council, and the continued "fraternity" that President Jacob Zuma referred so warmly in his closing speech.

Mr Xi also said China was ready to play "a constructive role in promoting political settlement of Africa's hot-spot issues", but did not elaborate.

Closing the two-day summit, Mr Zuma thanked Mr Xi for taking China's relationship with Africa "to its highest level ever".

He said co-operation with China was based on "sincerity, mutual trust, equality, win-win co-operation and mutual benefit".

image copyrightAP
image captionPresident Xi pledged to respect the independence of African states

"Africa and China are together a fraternal community with a shared and prosperous future," he said. "China and Africa want to prosper together."

China's announcement of grants, loans and development funds was widely anticipated, although the figure exceeded expectations.

The Forum on China-Africa Co-operation (Focac) was the second time China has brought together African leaders since the forum was launched in Beijing in 2000.

More on China in Africa:

image copyrightAFP

More on this story

Around the BBC