UNITED NATIONS, May 29 (Xinhua) -- A Chinese envoy on Wednesday asked the international community to help Africa tap its potential in natural resources and prevent their illicit exploitation and trade.
The international community should actively assist relevant countries in establishing and improving the judicial, administrative, law enforcement and other governance mechanisms in the exploitation of natural resources, intensify efforts to combat illicit exploitation and transportation of natural resources, and reduce the demand for illegally exported resources, said Yao Shaojun, minister counselor and political coordinator of China's permanent mission to the United Nations.
He also called for efforts to convert the resource advantages of African countries into a development advantage.
Natural resources are an important material basis for development and an important factor for peace and stability, Yao told a meeting of the Security Council Ad Hoc Working Group on Conflict Prevention and Resolution in Africa.
The United Nations should further strengthen its cooperation with the African Union (AU) and other regional organizations in Africa in the management of natural resources, and in combating illicit exploitation and transportation, he said.
The world body should fully leverage its own advantages and provide more support to the AU and regional countries in such areas as personnel training, standards-setting and assistance coordination, he said.
The Security Council, as the primary organ for the maintenance of international peace and security, should provide constructive support to Africa in combating illicit exploitation and transportation of natural resources, and in conflict prevention and resolution, and do its utmost to avoid any negative impact on relevant countries in their normal use of natural resources, said Yao.
China has been consistently following the principle of equality, mutual benefit and win-win cooperation and actively supporting other countries in their sound development, use and management of natural resources. China firmly opposes illicit exploitation and trade of natural resources, he said.
China stands ready to work with the international community to bring into full play the positive role of natural resources in maintaining international peace and promoting common development, and to contribute to the promotion of regional peace and stability in Africa, he said.