Ties With China Based On Core Values Of Mutual Trust …
Amb. Kumba Momoh
Sierra Leone’s deputy ambassador to the People’s Republic of China has said, the establishment of diplomatic and people-to-people ties between the two nations on 29th July, 1971 was based on “the core values of mutual trust and economic cooperation for the benefits of both countries.”
Madam Kumba Alice Momoh spoke in Beijing whilst addressing dozens of Sierra Leonean students during their annual convention.
Deputizing Ambassador Alimamy P. Koroma, Madam Momoh said, the strong ties of friendship and cooperation between the two nations were made stronger when in October, 1971, Sierra Leone voted in favour of a UN General Assembly Resolution, 2758, recognizing China’s legitimate representation to the UN Security Council.
She categorized the scope of 45 years of diplomatic relations between the two nations into; Technical, Political, Economic Cooperation, and Infrastructural Development, further highlighting what she termed as China’s continued “tremendous contributions” to Sierra Leone in the areas of Health, Education and Culture.
Such support, she said, could also be felt in the educational sector, through the award of scholarships to deserving Sierra Leonean students in various fields of study, an offer, she said, that continues to increase yearly in terms of numbers.
In trade and economic cooperation, Madam Momoh informed students that China is Sierra Leone’s second largest import and export partner, after the European Union, with dozens of Chinese companies in Sierra Leone, including the mining sector all contributing to national growth.
“Trade volume between China and Sierra Leone reached $1.71 billion USD in 2014. Chinese direct investment in Sierra Leone is over $600 million, making China the largest investor in Sierra Leone.”
Madam Momoh also highlighted the role the Asian giant continues to play in building Sierra Leone’s infrastructure, with specific reference to the National Stadium; Youyi Ministerial Complex; The Police and Military Headquarters and the new Ministry of Foreign Affairs and International Cooperation Building, with pending plans for a new airport at Mamamah.
The two sides, she said, have shown mutual trust, respect and support to each other, on issues related to their core interests and have always stood together through challenging times. Sierra Leone, she assured, will continue to support China’s one policy.
Concluding, Madam Momoh said, the scope of cooperation ties between the two nations has been fruitful in many ways, with huge untapped opportunities waiting to be opened in a range of sectors.
Sierra Leone, she said, could have had more in terms of growth and development, but for the Ebola outbreak, also challenging students to do all they could in maximizing available opportunities so as to foster the ties of cooperation between the two countries.
Climax to the convention was the election of the first ever female president of the Sierra Leonean Students’ Union in China, Salamatu Bellah Conteh PhD. Candidate, succeeding Saidu M. Sesay.
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