China launches first economic cooperation area in Africa

5 February 2007

Lusaka, Zambia, 5 Feb – China said Sunday it had created an economic and commercial cooperation area for Africa in Zambia, the first of five such areas that it plans to set up on the continent, where the presence of Chinese companies has been on the increase.

The announcement was made during an official visit by Chinese president, Hu Jintao to Lusaka, as part of a tour of eight African countries, which began on January 30 and is scheduled to end on February 10.

Zambia will thus become the central point of a network of Chinese investments on the African continent.

In Zambia alone, the Beijing government plans to invest US$800 million and will set up 60 companies in the country, which will create 60,000 jobs by 2010, the year in which the area is expected to be completed.

Hu also announced a US$200-million investment to build a modern copper foundry at the Zambian mine run by the Chinese company, Non-Ferrous Metals Corporation of Africa. (macauhub)