As they broaden economic relations with the African continent, Chinese leaders are waking up to the fact that business is not possible without security, noted José Fernando Costa Pereira, Policy Adviser at the European External Action Service (EEAS) Directorate for Africa, at Friends of Europe’s meeting in Brussels.
“Chinese and European interests in Africa are converging,” he said, “particularly in the areas of peace and security. We believe that these common interests provide us with a broader scope for trilateral cooperation between China, the EU, and African partners.”
“Now more than ever, we have to acknowledge that many countries have serious issues to deal with at home,” said Yentyl Williams, EU-ACP Trade Researcher at the University of Gent and Founder of the ACP Young Professionals Network. “In these troubled times, it is becoming clear that African problems need African solutions and, in this regard, the priority should be the African Union’s Agenda 2063. Chinese, European, and African cooperation should complement this vision.”
Cooperation is indeed the guiding principle of Chinese involvement in Africa, stressed Xumin Zhang, Political Counsellor at the Mission of the People's Republic of China to the EU. “We support peaceful resolutions to security issues on the continent and are encouraging countries, regional organisations, and the African Union to solve regional issues through African means,” he said.
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