Following the commitment made by China in strengthening Africa’s industrial capacity during the second summit of the Forum on China-Africa Cooperation (FOCAC) held in Johannesburg in December 2015, Kenya is hosting the maiden launch of China-Africa Industrial Capacity Cooperation Exhibition that will kick off on December 13-December 16 at the Kenyatta International Convention Centre (KICC) in Nairobi.
This momentous occasion brings together over 53 mega-enterprises from 18 Chinese provinces, autonomous regions and municipalities across various sectors including Top 500 Corporations such as China Communications Construction Group, China Telecom, China Unicom, China National Complete Plant Import & Export Corporation (Group), China National Nuclear Corporation, and National Development Bank that will display advanced technology and equipment in China’s railway, highway, infrastructure construction, machinery equipment, advanced manufacturing, agricultural products processing, information and telecommunications sectors. The Mombasa-Nairobi Standard Gauge Railway will also debut at the Expo.
Organized by China International Exhibition Centre Group, the 4-day event is sponsored by China Council for the Promotion of International Trade (CCPIT) in collaboration with China Africa Development Fund (CADFund), Kenya Investment Authority, and the Kenya National Chamber of Commerce & Industry (KNCCI).
The Expo, covering a floor space of more than 2,300 square meters, is designed to enhance the China-Africa pragmatic cooperation and strengthen Africa’s industrial capacity to take advantage of numerous opportunities provided by the Belt and Road initiative.
“The Expo will provide a platform for the overall exchange and intensified cooperation between Chinese and African enterprises,” said Chen Zhou, Vice Chairman of the China Council for the Promotion of International Trade (CCPIT). “It will help encourage more Chinese enterprises to go into Africa and accelerate the process of African industrialization to benefit African people across the continent.”
The Expo will also expose China’s small- and medium-sized enterprises to the investment opportunities available in the East African market and encourage the development of trading and business partnerships with local players, creating a multi-level, multi-industrial and multi-element display at the Expo. These enterprises are strongly expected to drive the “stage of transformation and upgrading” in China-Africa industrial capacity cooperation.
“The Expo will provide a high quality and efficient platform and bridge for China-Africa Industrial Capacity Cooperation in line with the Ten Point Cooperation plan initiated during the 2015 Johannesburg FOCAC Summit,” said Michael D. M Kinyanjui, Kenya Ambassador to China. “This is especially in the fields of Africa’s Industrialization and Agricultural modernization. It is also in line with the aspirations and objectives of the Belt and Road Initiative.”
Statistics indicate that in the first half of 2017, China-African trade value reached US$85.3 billion, up 19% year-on-year. The non-financial direct investment from Chinese enterprises in Africa reached US$1.6 billion, up 22% year-on-year.
During the Expo, CCPIT will sign memorandum of understanding on cooperation with trade and investment promotion institutions in Kenya, Mozambique, and Ethiopia to boost the trading ties.
The event is expected to bring to Nairobi more than 3,000 dignitaries drawn from government officials and enterprise representatives from several African countries, to learn China’s industrial capacity advantage and discuss important themes addressing African economic development bottlenecks to realize sustainable development.
During the preparatory stage, CCPIT visited many African embassies in China to discuss areas of interest and chart areas of cooperation that will be the highlight of the Expo.
Kenya is situated in the east coast of Africa. It is a pivotal country along the “Belt and Road” cooperation and one of the countries given priority for pilot implementation of industrial capacity cooperation.
Kenya enjoys a steady political and business environment. The government gives priority to the development of agriculture, infrastructure construction and energy, greatly supports the economic revitalization measures for small- and medium-sized enterprises which highly complements the China-Africa industrial capacity cooperation.