Chinese president to visit Tanzania over the weekend


DAR ES SALAAM, Tanzania (eTN) – Chinese President Hu Jintao’s arrives in Tanzania this weekend in a two-day state visit aimed to enhance Sino-Tanzania economic cooperation and help both countries tide up over global financial crisis.

The Chinese president’s visit to Tanzania is part of his weeklong visit to four African states and Saudi Arabia. It marks the first visit by a Chinese president to Tanzania.
Tanzanian government officials said the visit of the Chinese president will influence Sino-Africa cooperation.

Officials in Tanzania said China is seeking strong ties with the African continent in looking the ways that will help to overcome the international financial crisis through cooperation and friendship.

Trade volumes between China and Africa reached over US$100 billion dollars last year from 20 billion dollars eight years ago.

Hu arrived in Saudi Arabia Tuesday for a five-nation tour. The weeklong trip will also take him to Mali, Senegal, Tanzania and Mauritius.

China will build an international conference centre in the Tanzanian capital of Dar es Salaam for conventions and tourism development. China has funded construction of a 60,000-seat new sports stadium in Dar es Salaam that is counted among the most modern sports facility in East Africa.

While in Africa, Hu will be holding talks and meetings with leaders of the four countries, and exchange views on international and regional issues of common concern, Chinese Foreign Ministry spokeswoman Jiang Yu said.

Hu was invited by the Saudi Arabian King Abdullah bin Abdul-Aziz, Malian President Amadou Toumany Toure, Senegalese President Abdoulaye Wade, Tanzanian President Jakaya Mrisho Kikwete, Mauritian President Anerood Jugnauth and Mauritian Prime Minister Navinchandra Ramgoolam, Jiang.

Mr. Hu’s visit to Tanzania is likely to receive little attention or no welcoming flowers from common Tanzanians because China is seen as a country that do little support to people other in key social sectors.

Chinese oil company is expected to buy big shares of the ailing Air Tanzania Company Limited (ATCL), a contract that many business stakeholders are
questioning over the Chinese credibility in global aviation business.

Observers said Mr. Hu’s visit would attract more Chinese petty traders who are flocking to Tanzanian towns selling fake and cheap products. In other words, China had turned Tanzania a dumping site of fake products. China is the biggest exporter of retail and cheap goods to Tanzania at the moment.

On human rights record, China is rated zero on its support to fight corruption in Africa and has nothing to do with human rights groups, other than big military support to corrupt governments in the continent.

China is the biggest supporter of the Zimbabwean President Robert Mugabe.