(Xinhua) -- Afoluke Olufuwa looks closely at an
exhibition board showing flight routes between Chengdu and
cities in Africa, as she participates in a forum in Chengdu,
capital of southwest China’s Sichuan Province.
Olufuwa, who works with the Policy
Planning Division in the Nigerian Ministry of Foreign Affairs,
was one of 88 representatives from 30 African countries and 50
organizations to attend the fifth China-Africa People’s Forum,
held Monday to Tuesday. More than 100 representatives from China
“The forum is an important occasion to
get to know China better and look for new opportunities for
cooperation,” said Olufuwa. “For example, we should learn from
China because it ensures anti-corruption efforts are effective.”
Economic cooperation between China and
African countries has grown fast. According to Chinese customs,
from January to May this year, trade between China and African
countries was worth 81.9 billion U.S. dollars, up 17.7 percent
year on year.
“The most popular Chinese goods
include clothing, furniture, jewelry and synthetic hair. Rural
people particularly like China-made solar lights because many
parts of our country are still not electrified. The lights can
be used to charge phones and small machines,” said Selma Theresa
Philemon, chief parliamentary clerk for the Standing Committee
on Gender Equality, Social Development and Family Affairs in
Cooperation between China and Africa
has gone beyond the economy and trade to include broader areas.
“China has helped us a lot in
education, infrastructure and health,” Philemon said. “I hope
China can continue to help in manufacturing and add values to
our products, especially in mining and fisheries.”
Nicholas Ekow De-Heer, head of
programs at the Institute of Fiscal Studies in Ghana, said the
success of relations between China and African countries lied in
cooperation carried out through the principle of equality.
“Africa needs China in the building of
industrial parks, agricultural modernization and
infrastructure,” he said.
The forum also witnessed the launch of
the China-Africa People-to-People Friendship and Partnership
program, which lasts from 2018 to 2020. It includes vocational
training, humanitarian aid, donations, personnel and cultural
“Guided by a win-win spirit, mutual
respect and trust, the ties between China and Africa will grow
stronger,” De-Heer said.