President Xi Jinping of China and his Zimbabwean counterpart Emmerson Mnangagwa on Tuesday agreed to establish a comprehensive strategic partnership of cooperation between the two countries.
The two heads of state reached the consensus during their talks at the Great Hall of the People in Beijing.
Mnangagwa is on a state visit to China from April 2 to April 6 at the invitation of President Xi.
Earlier, Mnangagwa commended his Chinese counterpart Xi Jinping for supporting the country while it is still under Western sanctions.
Mineral-rich Zimbabwe has long had strong ties to China, a Cold War ally and now its biggest foreign investor.
Mnangawa’s appointment as president after the forced resignation of Robert Mugabe in November whose decades in power had seen the economy collapse was quietly welcomed in Beijing.
There has even been widespread speculation that the Asian giant might have given its blessing to the army general responsible for Zimbabwe’s bloodless military coup, Constantine Chiwenga, who visited Beijing shortly before the takeover.
Mnangagwa arrived in China on Monday for a five-day trip that is expected to focus on deepening economic ties between the two countries as Zimbabwe continues to face sanctions from the U. S. and other democracies despite promises by its new leader to clamp down on corruption.
“I will say thank you not only to the president of China but also the people of China for standing and supporting Zimbabwe during the hard times when the West imposed sanctions on us,’’ Mnangagwa told Xinhua news agency on Saturday.
He said he also hoped to attract new Chinese investors to Zimbabwe to help the country “leapfrog’’ to middle income economic status after 18 years of isolation.
Separately on Tuesday, Zimbabwe business conglomerate Platinum Agriculture and Princewood Enterprises announced 500 million dollars in deals with Chinese firms in the areas of transport, agriculture and mining, according to Zimbabwean newspaper The Herald.
Source: PM News