Ethiopia and China take a major step in their cooperation
China and Ethiopia announced enhancing bilateral ties to an “all-weather strategic partnership” on Tuesday, after a meeting between Chinese President Xi Jinping and Ethiopian Prime Minister Abiy Ahmed.
The Ethiopian leader, who is in Beijing for the third Belt and Road Forum for International Cooperation, described Ethiopia-China relations as a positive model for “China-Africa and South-South cooperation.”
“We can build on this model to effectively address our current and future development challenges in the new era,” Ahmed said in a statement posted on X (formerly Twitter).
Earlier on Monday, Addis Ababa said Ahmed held talks with Chinese Premier Li Qiang, after which the two countries inked 12 cooperation agreements.
The agreements cover “Belt and Road cooperation, implementation of the Global Development Initiative, agriculture, culture, health, digital economy, green development, and urban and infrastructure construction,” according to a separate statement from the Chinese government.
Li expressed Beijing’s willingness to work with Addis Ababa to support mutual efforts to ensure domestic stability and development.
“China stands ready to strengthen cooperation with Ethiopia within such multilateral frameworks as the BRICS mechanism to practice multilateralism, oppose power politics and bullying, and safeguard the common interests of China and Africa as well as international equity and justice,” he added.
Ethiopia is set to be admitted into the BRICS, currently comprising Brazil, Russia, India, China, and South Africa, in January.
On Monday, Ahmed said Ethiopia was prepared to strengthen coordination and cooperation with China within the framework of the BRICS.
He added that Ethiopia was willing to actively participate in the Belt and Road Initiative (BRI) and deepen cooperation in various sectors, including agriculture and infrastructure construction.
The BRI is a plan China launched a decade ago under which Chinese companies have built ports, roads, railways, power plants, and other infrastructure around the world to boost trade and economic growth.
More than a dozen leaders from Africa, Asia, and the Middle East arrived in Beijing on Monday for the conference marking the tenth anniversary of the BRI.
Congolese President Denis Sassou N’guesso, Kenyan President William Ruto, and Nigerian Vice President Kashim Shettima are among the African leaders who have so far arrived at the forum.
While the two-day conference’s main events are scheduled for Wednesday, Ruto announced on Monday that Kenya had signed a memorandum of understanding with Huawei to accelerate the East African country’s digital transformation.