The Southern African Development Community (SADC) Executive Secretary, Her Excellency, Dr. Stergomena Lawrence Tax met with Chinese Ambassador to Botswana and Special Representative to SADC, His Excellency, Dr. Zhao Yanbo in Gaborone, Botswana on the 18th May 2018.
The meeting discussed matters of mutual interest, with specific focus on the upcoming Forum on China-Africa Cooperation (FOCAC) Summit, scheduled for September 2018 in Beijing, China. The FOCAC Summit is held every three years to promote diplomatic, trade, security and investment relations between China and African countries, as well as fostering the integrated framework governing Chinese - African relations. H.E. Dr. Yanbo stated that the Government of the Peoples Republic of China was pleased to be working with the SADC region and hailed the cooperation between the two parties. He highlighted that the 2018 FOCAC will take stock of the achievements since the 2015 FOCAC, and firm up cooperation for the next 3 years.
Dr. Tax appreciated the aspiration by China to continue strengthening the cooperation with SADC and commended China for the continued support to the SADC Secretariat and to SADC Member states. She also called for meaningful cooperation, especially in investments and sharing of experiences and expertise in areas of industrialisation, noting the vast experience of China in this area. She further welcomed China’s readiness as a strategic partner in the consolidation of peace and Security through different areas and programmes
The meeting also agreed to finalize the Framework Agreement on Economy, Trade, Investment and Technical Cooperation between the Southern African Development Community and the Government of the People’s Republic of China to be signed during upcoming Forum on China-Africa Cooperation (FOCAC) Summit in September 2018.