JOHANNESBURG, July 25 (Xinhua) -- Chinese President Xi Jinping's signed article published by South Africa's mainstream media Sunday has raised expectations for a new era of friendship between the rainbow nation and China.
The article, "For a New Era of China-South Africa Friendship", was carried by South African newspapers -- The Sunday Independent, Sunday Tribune and Weekend Argus.
Explaining the comprehensive strategic partnership between China and South Africa, Xi said in the article that the relationship between the two countries has stood the test of time and a changing international environment.
From a partnership to a strategic partnership, and then to a comprehensive strategic partnership, the relationship has made big strides and demonstrated a strong growth momentum in political trust, economic and trade cooperation, people-to-people exchanges and strategic coordination.
Lindiwe Sisulu, South Africa's minister of international relations and cooperation, said her country attaches great importance to the comprehensive strategic partnership, adding that the government hopes to consolidate the friendly relationship with China and is committed to enhancing bilateral cooperation.
South Africa, looking forward to President Xi's state visit and his participation in the BRICS summit, will work closely with China to make the visit a success with pragmatic results, she said.
Dipuo Letsatsi-Duba, minister of state security, said South Africa and China are not only partners but also brothers.
South Africa is ready to take the occasion of the 20th anniversary of the establishment of its diplomatic relations with China to review the development of bilateral ties and deepen mutually beneficial cooperation, Letsatsi-Duba said.
Buti Manamela, deputy minister of higher education and training, said he agreed with President Xi that the two countries have seen expanding cooperation in such areas as education, culture, science and technology, and health, and growing exchanges between youths and women.
He said cross-cultural dialogue between South Africa and China can promote the process of building a community with a shared future for mankind, adding that it is also an important cornerstone for opening a new era of friendship between the two countries.
BRICS Business Council Chair Iqbal Surve said the mutual benefit and common development Xi mentioned in his article showed the value of South Africa-China economic and trade cooperation.
He said South Africa welcomes Chinese companies to expand their investment in the country, promote scientific and technological progress and innovation, facilitate the commercialization of scientific and technological achievements, and push forward their development with innovation.
Xi said in the article that this year's summit will be the first one held in the second "Golden Decade" of BRICS cooperation, and China will go all out to support South Africa in hosting this event.
"Under the theme of 'BRICS in Africa: Collaboration for Inclusive Growth and Shared Prosperity in the Fourth Industrial Revolution,' we will deepen BRICS strategic partnership, enhance BRICS solidarity and cooperation, and facilitate the inter-connected development of BRICS countries," Xi said.
In an article titled "BRICS summit a wonderful opportunity", The Sunday Independent said, "We share the optimism and expectation of the People's Republic of China's President Xi Jinping that something new will emerge from this gathering, packed with potential for the future of South-South cooperation."
BRICS "could bring about a much needed rebalancing of the global financial and trade governance system" and is "a tremendous opportunity to come up with a new perspective of co-operation and development," it added.
Xi arrived in Pretoria on Monday for his third state visit to South Africa. He will attend the 10th BRICS summit in Johannesburg from Wednesday to Friday.
South Africa is the fourth stop of Xi's five-nation Middle East and Africa tour, which has taken him to the United Arab Emirates, Senegal and Rwanda. He will also visit Mauritius during a stopover.