Angola’s ambassador in Beijing highlights role of Macau Forum

5 December 2005

Beijing, China, 05 Dec – The Forum for Economic and Trade Cooperation between China and the Portuguese-speaking Countries (Macau) will definitely lead to increased economic cooperation between Angola and china, Angola’s ambassador to China said in Beijing.

In an interview with Chinese magazine, “Chinese Entrepreneur”, Ambassador João Manuel Bernardo said that the Forum would, “open up new roads that will lead to more stable cooperation in a larger number of sectors between China and Angola”.

“The People’s Republic of China is an important partner for Angola in terms of economic and trade relations,” Bernardo said adding that increased bilateral trade was proof of the friendship between the two countries.

According to the ambassador, in 2004 Angola exported goods to China of a total value of US$4.2 billion, which made Angola China’s second largest trading partner in Africa.

Official figures from China’s Ministry of Commerce, in the first three quarters of 2005 Angola registered a trade surplus with China of US$4.28 billion, against US$2.68 billion in the same period of 2004. These figures place Angola in 7th place among the countries which most benefit from trade with China.

The official list that the Ministry calls the 10 main sources of trade deficit is headed by Taipei (Taiwan), which has a trade surplus with China of US$41.05 billion and ends with Brazil, which has a surplus of US$3.52 billion in its trade with China.

According to the ambassador, Chinese citizens and Chinese companies, such as China Jiangsu Jinchao International, China Overseas Engineering and China Road and Bridge, had carried out and would certainly carry out exceptional work in future in the areas of communications, electrical networks and railroads, in particular.

Mentioning that under the terms of Angolan law both national and international investors are given guarantees, the ambassador said that whoever wanted to invest in Angola would be “welcome”.

“Angola welcomes all Chinese companies that want to invest in Angola,” the ambassador said adding that after 30 years of civil war every kind of work needs to be done, specifically construction and renovation of roads, bridges, railroads, ports and airports.

Angola’s ambassador to Beijing also called for investment in small and medium-sized companies and agricultural projects which “provide jobs and thus help to eliminate hunger and poverty in my country.”

Apart from the diamonds and oil for which Angola is famous, Angola also has many other mineral deposits such as gold, copper, lead and uranium. The country currently produces over 1 million barrels of oil per day and in five years it is expected to be the largest oil producer in all of sub-Saharan Africa.

Angola has particularly good conditions for agricultural production as it has rich soils and the average temperature is warm, at between 19 and 26 degrees Celsius. The main agricultural products are sugar cane, cotton and coffee, for which the country is already known as in 1970 it was the world’s fourth largest producer of coffee. (macauhub)