THE friendship between Zimbabwe and China has benefited the two countries economically and politically.
Acting Foreign Affairs Minister Mike Bimha said this at the celebrations of the 67th anniversary of the founding of China at the Chinese Embassy in Harare.
The function was attended by senior Government officials, including Finance and Economic Development Minister Cde Patrick Chinamasa; Minister of Information, Media and Broadcasting Services Dr Christopher Mushohwe; Mines and Mining Development Minister Walter Chidhakwa; Information Communication Technology Postal and Courier Services Supa Mandiwanzira; and Women Affairs, Gender and Community Development Deputy Minister Abigail Damasane, diplomats and the Chinese community among others.
Minister Bimha congratulated China and said Zimbabwe also celebrated the excellent bilateral relations between the two nations.
“China has been an ally of Zimbabwe since the days of our liberation struggle and this friendship has continued to deepen to the post-independence era.
“Our relations have spurred to new heights over the past few years as reflected in the broader range areas with which we cooperate both politically and economically,” he said.
He said the various agreements that were signed during the high-level exchange visits by the Chinese head of State Xi Jinping and President Mugabe had contributed immensely towards the socio-economic transformation of Zimbabwe.
“We greatly appreciate the assistance that China has extended to Zimbabwe in the form of human capacity training programmes, technological transfer, infrastructural development and humanitarian assistance. We are most grateful for China’s assistance in our time of need.
“Only last week we received first batch of the 20 000 tonnes of rice which China donated to Zimbabwe to mitigate the effects of El Nino-induced drought,” he said.
He said Zimbabwe looked forward to continue working with China to further expand and consolidate the multi-faceted relations between the two countries.
Chinese Ambassador to Zimbabwe Mr Huang Ping said he cherished and appreciated Zimbabwe’s staunch support for Chinese international and regional affairs.
He said the China-Zimbabwe friendship was bearing fruits in every front including political, economic, cultural and educational.
Most of the big projects in Zimbabwe such as the expansion of Kariba South Hydro Power Station, Victoria Falls International Airport, NetOne and TelOne communications projects are being implemented by Chinese companies and financed by Chinese banks.
Ambassador Ping said Chinese investments in Zimbabwe had contributed a lot to the social and economic development of Zimbabwe.
“For example, TianZe Company that contracts farmers to procure tobacco has only seven Chinese employees, while it directly and indirectly provides more than 26 000 job opportunities to the local Zimbabwean people.
“As long as we persevere to the end and never give up, we will overcome difficulties and open up new prospects. I am convinced that through our joint efforts, China and Zimbabwe will embrace an even brighter future. China-Zimbabwe relations will be closer and stronger every day,” he said.
China became independent in 1949 and has become the world’s second largest economy with a GDP of $10,42 trillion in 2015.
This is almost 200-fold that of 1979.
China has actively integrated itself with the world and made outstanding contributions to world peace and pros- perity.