PROBLEMS facing African countries are related to their colonial past, Chinese Ambassador to Zambia Li Jie has said. And Ambassador Li says China does not want to wear a colonialist hat. During a briefing in Lusaka on Friday afternoon, Ambassador Li said China has had no history of colonialism because it had never colonized any country before.
Jie said China was of the belief that Africa belonged to Africans and “that is why calling Chinese as colonialists is not befitting”.
“Recently when I watched ZNBC, I heard some voices, I heard some description of China being a face of new colonialism. I feel really strange. We don’t want to have this hat, it is not appropriate for China. Colonial policy has never existed in China’s diplomacy and practice. China never colonized any African country in their history. On the contrary, all the challenges the African countries are facing now…originate from their colonial pasts,” Ambassador Li said.
“My country, we share a very similar history as yours, we were colonized or semi-colonized by the western powers and Japan. So we know very clearly what colonialism is. Colonialism is not our way, we have rendered tangible support to promote social economic development that includes the peoples’ livelihoods.
China has consistently insisted that Africa belongs to the African people.”
He said China was ready to work with other countries to deliver development to Zambia.
“China is also willing to deliver similar development to other poor countries. We never seek the so-called sphere of influx. We do not engage in exclusive cooperation. We stand ready to work with any other country in the world to contribute to Zambia’s peaceful and stable development. We would like to work with any third world country in the programmes here in Zambia, to pursue for the common good. This morning (Friday), the President delivered a speech in Parliament, he also touched on that issue of neo-colonialism to a certain country referred to as China,” said Ambassador Li.
“It is better to teach a man how to fish than giving him a fish…many countries are in the process of getting to know fishing. China always adheres to actively strategize development strategy with Zambia’s development plan and always focuses on cultivating Zambia’s development capacity and also, China adheres to the principle of mutual benefit, a win-win cooperation and enhancing development concepts.”