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China's new development paradigm boosts China-Africa Partnership
By CG Lin Jing, published on Cape Times, November 26

The year 2020 is the critical year for China to secure a decisive victory in the fight to eradicate absolute poverty and build a moderately prosperous society in all respects, and the closing year of the 13th five year plan, while tremendous efforts have been made to tackle the once-in-a-century pandemic.

Under the strong leadership of the Central Committee of the Communist Party of China(CPC) with comrade Xi Jinping at its core, the country has made heroic and arduous efforts to advance both the epidemic prevention and control and the economic and social development, and effectively promoted the restoration of production and life orders.

As the result, China's economic growth of the first three quarters shifted from negative to positive.

The success of the third China International Import Expo (CIIE), held between Nov. 5 and Nov. 10 in Shanghai, well demonstrates the resilience and robust vitality of China's economic restoration and growth under the severe impact of the COVID-19 pandemic.

The economic recovery and growth has laid a solid foundation for the completion of the goals set by China's 13th Five Year Plan(2016-2020).

The country's GDP is expected to cross 100-trillion-yuan mark in 2020(about 15 trillion U.S. dollars) with a per capita GDP exceeding 10,000 USD. Over the past five years during the 13th Five Year Plan period, 55.75 million rural residents were lifted out of poverty, more than 60 million new urban jobs have been added. The country has built the largest social security system in the world, covering more than 1.3 billion people with basic medical insurance and nearly one billion people with basic pension insurance. China's middle-income population stands over 400 million, the largest of the world.

During the 2016-2020 period, China's economy, science and technology, education, culture, national defense etc. as well as comprehensive national strength have all been uplifted to a new level. A complete victory is in sight in the fight against poverty and building a moderately prosperous society in all respects.

With the accomplishment of the first centenary goal, that is , building a moderately prosperous society in all respects, China will usher in a new stage of development.

The fifth plenary session of the 19th CPC Central Committee, convened during Oct. 26-29 in Beijing, reviewed the historic achievements made during the 13th Five-Year Plan period, and adopted proposals for the 14th Five-Year Plan(2021-2025), raised a set of long-range objectives for China to basically achieve socialist modernization by 2035, including per capita GDP reaching the level of moderately developed countries and the size of the middle-income group being significantly expanded.

For the 14th Five-Year Plan period, China will speed up fostering a new "dual circulation" development paradigm, where domestic and foreign markets can boost each other, with the domestic market as the mainstay and strive to make new strides in economic development during the period. Higher quality development, and the roles of innovation, real economy, rural vitalization and green development were underscored for China's growth.

"Dual circulation" will accelerate the general trend of rebalancing China's economy, shifting from one driven by exports and investment toward one more focused on domestic demand. It does not mean the country will close its doors to the outside world. On the contrary, it is a strategic and win-win choice for China to reshape its international cooperation and new competitive edge. China's market will open wider and make greater contributions to the world economy.

In recent years, consumption growth has accounted for more than half of China's total growth, which is exactly in line with China's pursuit of high-quality development and high-level opening-up, and will offer a strong boost to global trade and the world economy.

In the recent past years, China-Africa friendly relations and cooperation have also experienced an unprecedentedly vigorous development. China has shown its utmost determination and sincerity to accelerate all-round cooperation with Africa and help African countries achieve economic independence and independent development under the framework of BRI and Forum on China-Africa Cooperation (FOCAC). In the current fight against COVID-19, China and Africa have again worked hand in hand and rendered fraternal mutual support.

In 2019, trade between China and Africa hit US$208.7 billion, and total Chinese FDI in Africa reached US$49.1 billion. Dozens of economic and trade cooperation zones and industrial parks have been established and in operation across Africa. China has built for Africa over 6,000 kilometers of railways and the same mileage of roads, nearly 20 ports and over 80 large-scale power plants, and more than 130 medical facilities, 45 stadiums and around 170 schools.

As Africa's largest trading partner, a stronger domestic economic circulation within China will generate increasingly bigger demand for African exports. During China's 2021-2025 period, the focus on technology and innovation in China will bring about abundant opportunities to deepen technological cooperation and skill transfer between China and Africa.

2020 marks the 20th anniversary of the Forum on China-Africa Cooperation (FOCAC). While the Chinese people are ushering in a new stage of development and committed to realizing the dream of the great rejuvenation of the Chinese nation, China-Africa Comprehensive Strategic and cooperative Partnership is embracing a new era of prosperous development and building a stronger China-Africa community with a shared future.



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