Update: Xi calls for closer BRI cooperation with Somalia

Source: Xinhua| 2020-12-14 20:00:50|Editor: huaxia

Ships carrying thousands of tonnes of rice set off from Huangpu Port in Shanghai for Somalia, the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC) and South Sudan to help these countries cope with their food security crisis, April 12, 2019. (Xinhua/Fang Zhe)

BEIJING, Dec. 14 (Xinhua) -- Chinese President Xi Jinping said Monday that he is ready to work with Somali President Mohamed Abdullahi Mohamed to enhance bilateral cooperation within the framework of the Belt and Road Initiative (BRI) for the benefit of the people of both countries.

Xi made the remarks in an exchange of congratulatory messages with his Somali counterpart celebrating the 60th anniversary of the diplomatic relationship between the two countries.

Over the past 60 years, Xi noted, China and Somalia have always understood, helped and supported each other no matter how the international situation changes.

The Beijing Summit of the Forum on China-Africa Cooperation (FOCAC) opens at the Great Hall of the People in Beijing, capital of China, Sept. 3, 2018. (Xinhua/Liu Weibing)

He recalled that during the Forum on China-Africa Cooperation (FOCAC) Beijing Summit in September 2018, he and President Mohamed reached important consensuses on developing bilateral relations, and that since the onset of COVID-19, the two sides have joined hands to fight the pandemic.

Stressing that he attaches great importance to the development of China-Somalia relations, Xi called for concerted efforts to take the 60th anniversary as an opportunity to promote the implementation of the outcomes of the FOCAC Beijing Summit and the Extraordinary China-Africa Summit on Solidarity against COVID-19, and boost bilateral BRI cooperation, so as to bring benefits to the people of both countries.

In his message, President Mohamed said that in the past 60 years, Somalia and China have witnessed steady development of their long-term friendly relations and sound cooperation in many fields.

Rice assistance from China is seen in Mogadishu, Somalia, Aug. 1, 2017. (Xinhua/Lyu Shuai)

The Somali government and its people think highly of the close cooperation and friendship between the two countries, he said, adding that Somalia will forever be China's friend.

He said he looks forward to working closely with Xi to further deepen and broaden bilateral friendly cooperation and create more benefits for both countries and their people.