BEIJING, China, July 23, 2012/African Press Organization (APO)/ -- Beijing Declaration of the Fifth Ministerial Conference of the Forum on China-Africa Cooperation
1. We, the Ministers of Foreign Affairs and Ministers in charge of economic cooperation of the People's Republic of China and 50 African countries and the Chairperson of the African Union (AU) Commission, met in Beijing from 19 to 20 July 2012 for the Fifth Ministerial Conference of the Forum on China-Africa Cooperation (FOCAC).
2. We express our thanks to H.E. President Hu Jintao of the People's Republic of China and H.E. President Jacob Gedleyihlekisa Zuma of the Republic of South Africa, H.E. Thomas Boni Yayi, rotating Chairperson of the African Union and President of the Republic of Benin, H.E. President Teodoro Obiang Nguema Mbasogo of the Republic of Equatorial Guinea, H.E. President Ismail Omar Guelleh of the Republic of Djibouti, H.E. President Mahamadou Issoufou of the Republic of Niger, H.E. President Alassane Ouattara of the Republic of Côte d'Ivoire, H.E. Prime Minister José Maria Pereira Neves of the Republic of Cape Verde, Rt. Hon. Prime Minister Raila Amollo Odinga of the Republic of Kenya, and H.E. Mohamed Kamel Amr, Special Envoy of the President of the Arab Republic of Egypt, for attending the opening ceremony of the Ministerial Conference. We welcome the participation of the Republic of South Sudan and the AU Commission for the first time as Forum members.
3. Under the theme of "build on past achievements and open up new prospects for the new type of China-Africa strategic partnership", we reviewed with satisfaction the development of China-Africa relations, evaluated the implementation of the follow-up actions to the Fourth Ministerial Conference of the Forum held in Sharm El Sheikh, Egypt in November 2009, and agreed that the goals set at the Fourth Ministerial Conference had been accomplished. This has further consolidated the basis of and opened up even broader space for the development of China-Africa relations. We also held discussion and reached extensive consensus on the ways and means to further deepen China-Africa relations.
4. We believe that the development of the new type of strategic partnership between China, the largest developing country, and Africa, the largest group of developing countries, is of great significance for the peace, stability and development of the world and serves the fundamental and strategic interests of both sides. As an important platform for collective dialogue and an effective mechanism of practical cooperation between China and Africa, FOCAC has played an irreplaceable role in promoting China-Africa relations. Both sides are ready to strengthen the building of FOCAC so that it will continue to steer China-Africa relations towards greater development.
5. We have taken note that the international situation is undergoing profound and complex changes. Peace, development and cooperation are the calling of the times. The balance of power in the world is moving towards more equilibrium. Developing countries are playing an increasingly important role in international affairs. We call for further changes in the international system and order to make them just and reasonable and suited to the political realities of the world. We underscore the importance for Africa to assume its rightful place in the international arena.
6. We are deeply concerned about the turbulences in certain regions and reaffirm our commitment to upholding the purposes and principles of the Charter of the United Nations and the basic norms governing international relations. We maintain that crises and disputes must be resolved peacefully through political means and advocate the security concept featuring mutual trust, mutual benefit, equality and coordination. We oppose interference in other countries' internal affairs and wanton use or threat of force in international affairs.
7. We stand for upholding the UN's core position and role in international affairs, and reaffirm the need for reform of the United Nations. In this regard, we reaffirm that the historical injustices endured by African countries should be undone, and priority should be given to increasing the representation of African countries in the UN Security Council and other UN agencies.
8. We are concerned that the global financial crisis is still spreading and deepening, and the world economic situation remains grim. We believe that countries around the world should work to pursue peace, promote development and resolve differences through cooperation, with a view to achieving stability and recovery of the world economy.
9. We believe that the North-South imbalance in development is an important factor hindering the strong, sustainable and balanced growth of the world economy. We reaffirm the priority of the issue of African development in narrowing the North-South gap. We call on the international community to earnestly increase input, and give support and help to African countries in their efforts to realize the UN Millennium Development Goals.
10. We appreciate the attention paid by the United Nations Conference on Sustainable Development, which was held in June 2012, on the issue of sustainable development in Africa. We hope that the international community will, in keeping with the principle of "common but differentiated responsibilities", take concrete actions to implement the outcome of the Conference. We call on the international community to, under the leading role of the UN, take seriously the inefficient implementation in the field of sustainable development, show the political will and commitment to build consensus, and reach agreement on the implementation plan of the post-MDG framework of sustainable development. We also urge the developed countries to honor their assistance commitments to developing countries, African countries in particular.
11. We believe that a fair, reasonable and non-discriminatory multilateral trading system is of critical importance to consolidating world economic recovery and sustainable development. We appeal to the relevant parties to demonstrate political sincerity, overcome difficulties and obstacles, actively advance the WTO Doha Development Round negotiations on the basis of upholding the Doha mandate and locking up the existing achievements, and fully accommodate the interests and concerns of developing countries, African countries in particular. We call upon the developed countries to refrain from taking steps in trade protectionism.
12. We stand for necessary reform of the existing international financial system, and the establishment of a fair, just, inclusive and orderly international financial system. Efforts should be made to truly increase the voice and representation of developing countries in international financial institutions and the international monetary system, and strengthen the functions of the international financial institutions in development and poverty reduction, in an effort to narrow the North-South gap. The African side supports the BRICS countries in exploring the possibility of setting up a new development bank for mobilizing resources for infrastructure and sustainable development projects in BRICS countries and other emerging economies and developing countries, for the purpose of supplementing the existing multilateral and regional financial institutions for global growth and development.
13. We have followed closely the question of increased threats and challenges brought by global issues such as climate change, environmental degradation, energy and resource security, major infectious diseases and massive natural disasters. We congratulate South Africa on successfully holding the UN Climate Change Conference in Durban, and believe that the relevant parties would, in accordance with the principles and provisions of the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change, faithfully implement the consensus on such issues as the Durban Platform for Enhanced Action, the second commitment period of the Kyoto Protocol, the Green Climate Fund, the technical mechanism and adaptation. We are willing to strengthen the comprehensive, effective and sustained implementation of the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change and the Kyoto Protocol, and jointly promote the process of international cooperation on climate change in accordance with the principles of equity and "common but differentiated responsibilities".
14. We are pleased to see the achievements China and Africa have both made in the political, economic, social and other areas in recent years, and have full confidence in each other's future development. The African side highly appreciates China's commitment to the path of peaceful development and its contribution to world peace, stability and economic growth. China applauds the effective efforts the African side has made in such areas as maintaining regional peace and stability, achieving higher growth rates and seeking strength through unity.
15. We believe that the China-Africa cooperation, featuring mutual benefit, equality, openness and inclusiveness, demonstrates the solidarity and mutual support between developing countries. It should be appreciated and supported by the international community. We call on the international development partners to draw on each other's strength and have sound interactions in Africa to jointly promote peace and development in the continent.
16. We reaffirm that China and Africa will continue to deepen the new type of strategic partnership of political equality and mutual trust, economic win-win cooperation and cultural exchanges. To this end, we will:
－Further strengthen political consultation and strategic dialogue, increase high-level visits, enhance the sharing of experience in governance, and respect and support each other's core interests on such issues as sovereignty, independence, security, unity, territorial integrity and national development, so as to increase the political trust and strategic consensus between China and Africa.
－Increase the exchanges and cooperation between the two sides in operationalizing Africa's Peace and Security Architecture, continue to support and assist African countries in increasing their capabilities for maintaining peace and security, and enhance coordination and communication in the UN Security Council and other multilateral institutions. We call on the international community to support the efforts of African countries and regional organizations in independently resolving African issues.
－Strengthen China's cooperation with the AU and sub-regional organizations in Africa, take joint measures to promote Africa's solidarity, harmony and strength through unity, and support measures for African regional integration and sustainable development efforts through AU/NEPAD.
－Fully explore and utilize each other's comparative advantages, expand mutually beneficial economic cooperation and balanced trade, adopt innovative ways to boost cooperation, improve cooperation environment, and properly handle problems and difficulties arising in cooperation. We will conduct even richer and more fruitful cooperation in response to the adverse impact of the global financial crisis and bring benefits to the Chinese and African people. Building on the achievements we have made, we will deepen our cooperation in trade, investment, poverty reduction, infrastructure building, capacity building, human resources development, food security, hi-tech industries and other areas, and elevate our cooperation to a higher level.
－Continue to strengthen people-to-people and cultural exchanges and cooperation between the two sides. We will vigorously carry out the dialogue between Chinese and African civilizations, launch a new round of exchanges in culture, education, sports, tourism and other fields, and forge closer ties between the young people, women, non-governmental organizations, media organizations and academic institutions of the two sides, with a view to deepening the understanding and friendship between the people of China and Africa and promoting the diversity of the world civilizations.
－Further strengthen the cooperation between the two sides in international affairs, take into full account each other's legitimate concerns and aspirations, strengthen coordination and mutual support, and work together to promote democracy in international relations and build a harmonious world of durable peace and common prosperity.
17. We have, in the spirit of this Declaration, formulated and adopted the Beijing Action Plan of the Fifth Ministerial Conference of the Forum on China-Africa Cooperation (2013-2015).
18. We express our thanks to Egypt for its contribution to the Forum's development and China-Africa relations since the inception of FOCAC, in particular during Egypt's chairmanship of the Forum from 2006 to 2009 and its co-chairmanship from 2009 to 2012.
19. We express our thanks to the Chinese side for the meticulous preparations and thoughtful arrangements for the Conference, and convey our congratulations on the fruitful results and great success of the Conference. We decided that the next ministerial conference of FOCAC will be held in South Africa in 2015.