Uhuru Leaves to Attend China-Africa Forum in Beijing

Uhuru in China for trade talks days after hosting UK PM Theresa May

He will also be co-chairing the forum on China-Africa Cooperation Summit which started this morning.

Last month, Malaysian prime minister Mahathir Mohamad canceled more than $20 billion worth of planned Chinese infrastructure projects, saying he was concerned about paying for them.

"Established 18 years ago, FOCAC has led global cooperation with Africa and has become a significant marker of South-South cooperation", said Li Dan, director of Africa Studies Center of China Foreign Affairs University.

According to data from John Hopkins University's China Africa Research Initiative, China has already loaned around $125 billion to the continent between 2000 and 2016.

Meanwhile, Africa's win is an initiative launched by the Chinese premier to promote non-resources-based China imports from Africa and a $5 billion special fund to accelerate such efforts.

The summit aims to build closer China-Africa ties further dovetailing China's BRI with African development, and set a new path for a higher level of China-Africa cooperation, state-run Xinhua news agency reported.

Ahead of the presidential address, Chinese officials had cited a 2017 study by McKinsey, a US consulting firm, which had spotlighted that China has become Africa's most important and unrivalled economic partner.

Djibouti has become heavily dependent on Chinese financing after China opened its first overseas military base in the Horn of Africa country previous year, a powerful signal of the continent's strategic importance to Beijing.

China has become a major investment partner for South Africa in stimulating economic and social transformation and development.

"I call on African countries to make full use of the summit to strive for the well-being of the people of both China and Africa", Khaled said.

The cooperation between China and Africa was "a forward looking partnership" not concerned only with the current - but also the future - challenges, he said. In an editorial, the paper said that the West just had "sour grapes" over China's good relations with Africa.

In July 2001, a FOCAC ministerial consultation meeting was held in Lusaka, capital of Zambia, at which the Procedures for Follow-up Mechanisms of FOCAC were deliberated and adopted.

On infrastructure connectivity, Xi said China will work with the African Union to formulate a China-Africa infrastructure cooperation plan and support Chinese companies in taking part in Africa's infrastructure development by way of investment-construction-operation or through other models.

"The reality is that Chinese debt as a percentage of total African debt is still relatively small", said Kenny Fihla, Standard Bank's chief executive for corporate banking.

The country meant to bring 200 young Africans to China for a skills exchange programme.

The pledge comes on top of a 2015 promise to provide African countries with $60 billion in funding that Xi said had either been delivered or arranged. Deeply indebted Pakistan is also reportedly reconsidering some projects in the multi-billion dollar China-Pakistan Economic Corridor that is a key link in the BRI.

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