China has attempted to strengthen ties with Zambia. President of China Xi Jinping, on Friday, promised Zambia to safeguard its national sovereignty, security and development interests, and prompting higher imports from the southern African nation.
The two nations’ relations were upgraded to a “comprehensive strategic cooperative partnership” after Xi met with Zambian President Hakainde Hichilema in Beijing, according to Chinese state news agency Xinhua. Xi promised to work with Zambia to increase collaborations in the areas of clean energy, infrastructure, agriculture, and mining.
Zambia is looking to discover additional trading prospects with China, the world’s second-largest economy, and to restructure its foreign debt with that country.
Hichilema commended China for helping to resolve Zambia’s financial issues and for supporting the African Union’s admission to the Group of 20 major economies at its summit in New Delhi on September 9-10, according to Xinhua.
Whether China and Zambia signed any loan arrangements wasn’t immediately known.
According to information gathered by the think tank American Enterprise Institute, China has substantial business interests in Zambia. Between 2014 and 2023, China invested in over 30 projects under its Belt and Road Initiative. It reveals that the projects, which included the energy industry as well as agriculture and aviation, totaled $11.3 billion. A percent of Zambia’s exports, primarily copper, go to China as well.
“Zambia abides by the one-China principle, highly appreciates the guiding concepts and principles of Chinese-style modernisation, and hopes to learn from China’s development experience,” Hichilema said at the meeting with Xi.
According to Xi, China is supporting more Chinese-funded businesses making investments in Zambia and is promoting more high-quality Zambian products to join the Chinese market.
Up to Saturday, Hichilema will be in China.