|Chinese President Xi Jinping (L, front) holds a welcoming ceremony for visiting Zambian President Michael Chilufya Sata ahead of their talks in Sanya, south China's Hainan Province, April 6, 2013. (Xinhua/Pang Xinglei)
SANYA, April 6 (Xinhua) -- Chinese President Xi Jinping and his Zambian counterpart Michael Chilufya Sata held talks on Saturday in China's southern city of Sanya and pledged to boost friendly cooperation between the two countries.
Xi pointed out that China and Zambia enjoy profound traditional friendship and the friendship founded by the leaders of the older generation of the two countries has withstood the test of history.
Both sides have supported each other in issues involving each other's major interests, and helped each other in the cause of national development, one historical testimony of which is the Tanzania-Zambia Railway, said Xi.
China attaches great importance to developing the bilateral relations, and is willing to work together with Zambia to inherit and carry forward traditional friendship, advance with the times, so as to promote continuous development of bilateral ties, Xi noted.
Xi said the Chinese side values relevant cooperation intentions from Zambia, and backs Chinese companies to participate in mineral industry, agriculture, manufacturing and infrastructure construction in Zambia.
"By actively taking social responsibility, we encourage Chinese enterprises to help Zambia realize self-development, while we hope the Zambian side can also create more favorable conditions for them," he added.
Although the overall momentum of Africa's peaceful development is good news, it is faced with various difficulties and challenges, Xi said.
Xi stressed that China has always regarded Africa as "a good friend, partner and brother" and deemed strengthening China-Africa unity and cooperation as a important cornerstone of China's foreign policy, and that China will firmly support Africa's efforts to advance peace and development.
For his part, Sata said China is a trustworthy friend of the people of Zambia and Africa. The Zambian is grateful to the precious contributions China has made for its national construction in the past years, and will bear in mind the Chinese-built railway.
China's development has offered significant opportunities for Zambia and Africa in the new era, Sata said, noting that Chinese businesses' investment in Zambia has provided a large number of jobs and benefited the livelihood of the people there.
Zambia would like to enhance cultural and educational exchanges with China by sending more students to study here, he added.
At the invitation of Xi, Sata is paying a state visit to China. The Zambian president will also attend the annual conference of the Boao Forum for Asia on Sunday.