VISITING Chinese vice minister of Shandong Province Ren Airong has called on the government to facilitate visas for Chinese businessmen wishing to visit Zambia. When she paid a courtesy call on foreign minister Joe Malanji yesterday, Ren said China was pushing for development cooperation with Zambia. She said China would carry out feasibility studies for gold in Eastern Province.
Ren said Zambia had a special bond with China that should be treasured by both countries.
The 10-man delegation from China’s Shandong Province is in Zambia at the “invitation of Eastern provincial administration.”
The purpose of the visit is to promote practical cooperation between Eastern Province and Shandong Province to strengthen the friendship between the two sub-governments.
“We are looking forward to cement the cooperation between the two sides and expand the channels for further exchanges between the two sides. And we are looking forward to also establish a working mechanism with you, the ministry,” she said.
“We are also expecting your facilitation regarding visa application for the Shandong business personnel to Zambia. And regarding your recommendation for the gold mine in Eastern Province, we will do a feasibility study in this regard. And on the other agenda, we will also cover Livingstone in Southern Province. And we are looking forward to follow ups regarding our mutual exchanges.”
And Malanji said Zambia was in a hurry to foster development.
He said any country that comes with interest to developing Zambia was welcome.
Malanji said Zambia had bilateral relations with many countries and strengthened by 38 missions with extra accreditations.
“So, we have a chain of bilateral relationships and multilateral relationships with many countries. And Zambia is in a hurry to foster development and any country that comes to Zambia is most welcome because nature does not allow a vacuum,” he said.
He said the twining of Eastern Province and Shandong would promote formal gold mining Eastern Zambia.
“So it is high time that we found developing cooperating partners that can actually help us to see formal mining into this province as opposed to what is obtaining now, where we have small scale miners digging here and there without reliable value addition,” said Malanji.