|Chinese Ambassador H.E. Long Zhou: "Strive for New Glory of China-Malawi Relations"|
On 28 December 2022, an article titled “Strive for New Glory of China-Malawi Relations” by H.E. Long Zhou, the Chinese Ambassador to Malawi, was published on Nation and Daily Times, to celebrate the 15 years of diplomatic ties between China and Malawi. Full text of the article is as follows:
On 28 December 2007, the People's Republic of China and the Republic of Malawi formally established diplomatic relations. Over the past 15 years, thanks to the joint efforts of both sides, China-Malawi relations have witnessed fast and sound development with fruitful cooperation in various fields. The friendship between China and Malawi has brought tangible benefits to both sides and has taken deep root among the two peoples. On this important day of the 15th anniversary of the establishment of diplomatic relations between China and Malawi, I would like to review the history of China-Malawi friendly relations and look forward to the future development with friends from all walks of life in Malawi.
One-China principle is the solid foundation for the stable development of China-Malawi relations. Fifteen years ago, Malawian government publicly announced the severance of “diplomatic ties” with Taiwan authorities and recognized that there is only one China in the world, Taiwan is an inalienable part of China, and the government of the People’s Republic of China is the sole legal government representing the whole of China. We commend the government, all political parties and whole society of Malawi for upholding the one-China principle and supporting China's great cause of reunification over the past 15 years. This is the important political foundation for the development of China-Malawi relations.
Political mutual trust leads China-Malawi relations to move forward. H.E. President Xi Jinping held a successful phone conversation with H.E. President Lazarus McCarthy Chakwera in August 2021, which set the direction for the development of China-Malawi relations. On the basis of the official establishment of party-to-party relations, the Communist Party of China(CPC) and the Malawi Congress Party (MCP) are jointly leading better and faster development of China-Malawi relations by strengthening dialogue, exchanges and mutual learning. H.E. Li Zhanshu, Chairman of the Standing Committee of the National People’s Congress of China, held a video meeting with Rt. Honourable Catherine Gotani-Hara, Speaker of Parliament of Malawi early this year. As the Malawi-China Parliamentary Friendship Group of Parliament of Malawi was officially launched, exchanges and cooperation between the legislative bodies of our two countries have been further strengthened.
Economic and trade cooperation enriches the rich substance of China-Malawi relations. Since the establishment of diplomatic ties, China-Malawi economic and trade cooperation has developed rapidly and achieved fruitful results. The Malawi Parliament Building, the Karonga-Chitipa Road, which were donated by the Government of China, and the Bingu International Convention Center, the Bingu National Stadium, and the Malawi University of Science and Technology, which were funded and built by China, have become landmark projects embodying China-Malawi friendship. China has actively promoted the implementation of jointly building the Belt and Road Initiative (BRI) and the achievements of the Forum on China-Africa Cooperation (FOCAC) in Malawi. China has implemented a number of aid projects, such as the CT scanner machine room, five community technical colleges and the rehabilitation of part of M1 road, and has cooperated with Malawi in the construction of a number of large-scale projects, such as the National Fiber Backbone Project Phase I and II. Export of peanuts, soybeans and other agricultural products from Malawi to China has become easier than before, and more and more Chinese companies has come to invest in Malawi. China has also donated a large amount of medical supplies to help Malawi in combating the COVID-19 pandemic. In August this year, China and Malawi signed agreements on three cooperation projects: maintenance of the Parliament Building, feasibility study on the Judicial Complex and Zero Tariff Treatment to Products under 98 Percent of Taxable Items of Malawi, bringing new vitality into China-Malawi practical cooperation.
People-to-people and cultural exchanges are the source of China-Malawi friendship. Since 2008, ten batches of Chinese medical teams totaling more than 170 doctors have been sent to Malawi. More than 88,100 local patients have been treated. They carry forward the spirit of “Rescuing the dying and Healing the wounded, Contributing boundless love”, making positive contributions to promoting the development of Malawi's medical and health care. The Chinese government provides around 100 scholarships to outstanding Malawian young people every year. The Confucius Institute at the University of Malawi holds activities such as Chinese language classes, Chinese Language Competitions and "Confucius Institute Day". These activities serve as windows for Malawian people, especially young people, to learn Chinese language and understand Chinese culture. The Chinese communities in Malawi do business in compliance with local laws and donated large amounts of PPEs and disaster relief materials during the hard times such as the outbreak of COVID-19 and Cyclone Idai and Cyclone Anna, which examplify the old saying "A friend in need is a friend indeed".
The 20th National Congress of the Communist Party of China (CPC) was successfully convened in October. The Congress takes place at a critical time as the entire Party and the Chinese people of all ethnic groups embark on a new journey to build China into a modern socialist country in all respects and advance toward the Second Centenary Goal. The Congress made a comprehensive review of the Party’s work in the past five years and the great achievements in the past decade, and made strategic plans for building a modern socialist country in all respects and advancing the great rejuvenation of the Chinese nation on all fronts. The CPC is dedicated to pursuing happiness for the Chinese people and rejuvenation for the Chinese nation. It is also dedicated to human progress and world harmony. The report to the 20th National Congress of the CPC indicates that China has always been committed to its foreign policy goals of upholding world peace and promoting common development, and it is dedicated to promoting a human community with a shared future. China remains firm in pursuing an independent foreign policy of peace and adheres to the Five Principles of Peaceful Coexistence in developing friendship and cooperation with other countries. It is committed to its fundamental national policy of opening to the outside world and pursues a mutually beneficial strategy of opening up. China plays an active part in the reform and development of the global governance system and works to make global governance fairer and more equitable. As China embarks on a new journey, it will achieve the new development. China's new developments will create new opportunities for the world, and Chinese modernization will also provide new options for mankind to achieve modernization.
Over the past 15 years, China-Malawi relations have withstood the risks and challenges posed by changes of the world, of our times and of history. The 15 years of friendly exchanges and mutually beneficial cooperation have fully demonstrated that the relationship between China and Malawi is a close brotherhood, an equal partnership, and a cooperative relationship of mutual benefit and win-win results. Maintaining and developing China-Malawi relations is in the fundamental interests of the two countries and the common aspiration of the two peoples. We are full of confidence in the future of China-Malawi relations, and we are willing to take the 15th anniversary as a new starting point to elevate China-Malawi relations to a higher level, especially in the following aspects:
Firstly, continue to enhance the mutual trust. Political mutual trust is the premise and basis for the development of relations between the two countries. Constantly consolidating political mutual trust is conducive to the stability and long-term development of bilateral relations. We believe that the Malawi government will continue to abide by its commitment to the one-China principle and maintain the political foundation of China-Malawi relations. Both sides will continue to promote high-level exchanges, to carry out in-depth experience exchanges on governance, to strengthen coordination and communication on issues involving each other’s core interests and major concerns, and to jointly promote the sound and steady development of China-Malawi relations.
Secondly, enrich the contents of cooperation. China has entered a new stage of development and is willing to share development opportunities with Malawi for mutual benefit and win-win results. In the next step, on the basis of previous cooperation, we will adhere to the principles of sincerity, real results, affinity, and good faith and with a commitment to the greater good and shared interests, strive to inject new impetus into the development of bilateral relations. Efforts will be made to carry out strategic alignment under the framework of the BRI, the Nine Projects of the 8th Ministerial Conference of the FOCAC, and the Global Development Initiative with the Malawi Vision 2063. We will share more development experience in infrastructure, agriculture, energy, power generation, ICT, education and other fields with Malawi, explore more opportunities for cooperation in clean energy, digital economy and other potential fields.
Thirdly, expand people-to-people and cultural exchanges. Affinity between peoples is the foundation of state-to-state relations. China is willing to further promote mutual learning, exchanges and cooperation between China and Malawi in the fields of education, culture, media, tourism, etc., and continuously encourage our two peoples to enhance understanding, strengthen unity, and consolidate friendship, so as to further enhance the bonds and mutual understanding between the two peoples for the development of China-Malawi relations.
China-Malawi relations are in a period of youth, full of vitality and promising a bright future. As good brothers and good partners, the both sides would surely work together through thick and thin, move forward side by side, jointly open up a new chapter for the bilateral relations, and deliver more benefits to our two peoples. As the Chinese ambassador, I would like to work hard to promote the better development of China-Malawi relations in pursuance with the spirit of the 20th National Congress of the CPC. I believe that with the concerted efforts of the friendly people from all walks of life of the both sides, China-Malawi relations will continue to move forward and reach a new height.