Outgoing Chinese Ambassador to Zimbabwe Mr Xin Shunkang and his wife Luo bid President Mugabe farewell at State House in Harare on May 9, 2012. The two countries have a long history of cooperation and solidarity., a photo by Pan-African News Wire File Photos on Flickr.
Sino-Zim trade to reach US$1b
Friday, 28 September 2012 00:55
The Bilateral trade volume between Zimbabwe and China is expected to reach US$1 billion by the end of this year, an official said yesterday.
Chinese ambassador to Zimbabwe Mr Lin Lin yesterday said more companies from his country were becoming involved in local economic development. He was speaking at a reception to mark the 63rd anniversary of the founding of the People’s Republic of China, held at the Chinese embassy.
“The bilateral trade volume was US$533 million in the first months of 2012, an increase of 20 percent from the same period last year,” said Mr Lin.
“Since my arrival in Harare two months ago, I can feel the warmth of China-Zimbabwe relations and the fraternal sentiments Zimbabwean people have for Chinese people.
“I am happy to see that the year 2012 witnessed a rapid development of the mutually beneficial economic co-operation between China and Zimbabwe.”
Mr Lin said from 2002 to 2011, China’s Gross Domestic Product grew at an annual rate of 10,7 percent and moved from sixth to second in the world.
The per-capita GDP rose from more than US$1 000 to US$5 432, with the foreign exchange reserves exceeding US$3 trillion.
Mr Lin said the fast development of relations between China and Zimbabwe brought tangible benefits to the people.
He said China made unprecedented social transformation, especially since adopting reform and opening up in 1978.
“China’s industrial structure was upgraded, its agricultural foundation was consolidated and regional development became much more balanced,” said Mr Lin.
“All-round progress was made in social programmes and people’s lives significantly improved. We have withstood the test of many disasters, difficulties and risks.
“In the last five years, we effectively tackled the huge impact of the international financial crisis and sustained steady and fast economic growth.”
Mr Lin said despite the achievements, the Chinese were clear that their country was still a developing country, with a large population and yet a weak economic base.
“It has to feed close to 20 percent of the world’s population with only nine percent of the world’s arable land and 6,5 percent of the world’s fresh water,” he said.
“Unbalanced development still exists between urban and rural areas and among different regions. There are 128 million Chinese people still living under poverty datum line.
“We still have a long way to go,” he said.