President Xi Jinping called on Thursday for media outlets in China and African countries to become facilitators of people-to-people exchanges and guardians of equity and justice to jointly advocate global development.
Xi made the remark in a congratulatory message sent to the fifth Forum on China-Africa Media Cooperation. The two-day event, which opened on Thursday in Beijing, was attended by more than 240 representatives from China and 42 African countries, including media workers and diplomats.
Noting that China and African countries are a community with a shared future, Xi said in his message that media outlets of both sides shoulder a significant responsibility in areas such as enhancing mutual trust and cooperation and maintaining world peace.
Since the forum was established 10 years ago, it has provided a major platform for advancing dialogue and cooperation between Chinese and African media outlets and played a positive role in deepening the China-Africa comprehensive strategic partnership, Xi said.
He expressed his hope that the media outlets in China and African countries will carry forward China-Africa friendship and cooperation and join hands in telling well the stories of both sides, thus making contributions to building a community with a shared future for mankind.
Since China and Senegal now co-chair the Forum on China-Africa Cooperation, Senegalese President Macky Sall also sent a congratulatory message to the forum.
Sall said the event, held amid the COVID-19 pandemic, is a sign of Chinese and African countries’ collective resilience and determination to move forward in implementing their common agenda.
He also praised the long-term tradition of Sino-African cooperation in culture, art and media through exchanges of various programs that promote reciprocal cooperation and mutual understanding between the peoples.
Over the past decade, the two sides have jointly undertaken a series of media cooperation projects for the benefit of people, including “The 10,000 Villages” project.
Aimed at providing 10,000 villages in Africa with digital satellite TV, this people-to-people exchange project was one of the 10 major cooperation plans proposed by Xi at the 2015 FOCAC Johannesburg Summit.
Addressing the opening ceremony of the forum, Huang Kunming, a member of the Political Bureau of the Communist Party of China Central Committee and head of the Publicity Department of the CPC Central Committee, said China is willing to work with African countries to actively build a global media environment that focuses on development and cooperation.
He also urged the two sides to enhance communication and share opportunities in such fields as digital technology and digital economy to help bridge the digital divide.
Gregoire Ndjaka, CEO of the African Union of Broadcasting, said in a video speech that the forum “is by far one of the most beneficial for Africa. This benefit is particularly evident in the training programs that China offered to African media practitioners.”
So far, China has provided training for more than 3,000 media workers from African countries.