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UN chief hails China-Africa partnership
UN chief hails China-Africa partnership

UN Secretary-General Ban Ki- moon hailed Tuesday in Addis Ababa the partnership between China and African countries when briefing the media of his visit to Addis Ababa for the 8th African Union summit.

"It is encouraging that the Chinese government has been trying to have a very cooperative partnership and relationship with all African countries," he said when responding to a question by Xinhua on China-Africa relations.

The world body's chief described the China-Africa summit held in Beijing last November as "important" and "a very good initiative."

"While engaged in such cooperative dialogue, I also hope African leaders and countries can try to emulate Chinese experience in economic development," he added.

China announced at the opening ceremony of the Beijing Summit of the Forum on China-Africa Cooperation (FOCAC) that it will double its 2006 assistance to Africa by 2009 in an effort to forge a new type of strategic partnership and strengthen cooperation in more areas and at a higher level.

Chinese President Hu Jintao left Beijing on Tuesday morning to pay a state visit to eight African nations from Jan. 30 to Feb. 10.

The eight nations are Cameroon, Liberia, Sudan, Zambia, Namibia, South Africa, Mozambique and Seychelles.

During his visit, President Hu is expected to meet leaders of the eight nations, and will exchange views with them on the relationship and the issues of common concern, according to Chinese Foreign Ministry spokesman Liu Jianchao.

"This tour will be China's another major diplomatic move toward the African nations since the Beijing Summit was held last November," Liu told a regular press conference prior to Hu's visit.

Ban arrived in Addis Ababa for the two-day AU summit that opened on Monday after winding up visit to the Democratic Republic of the Congo and the Republic of Congo. His African trip will end at Nairobi, where he will meet with the Kenyan President and the UN staff.

Xinhua

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