China’s 69th anniversary feted in Rwanda

Chinese envoy to Rwanda Henry Hongwei Rao speaks to the media. File.

On Wednesday, the Chinese community in Rwanda celebrated the 69th anniversary of the founding of the People’s Republic of China at a function held at the Embassy of China in Kigali.

The event celebrates the beginning of a new China under the leadership of the Communist Party of China (CPC) in 1949, led by Mao Zedong.

According to Rao Hongwei, China’s ambassador to Rwanda, the establishment of the People’s Republic of China 69 years ago brought with it the most profound social transformation in Chinese history.

“Under the leadership of the Communist Party of China, the Chinese government and people have found a development model that suits our national conditions and embarked on the path of becoming a united, strong, democratic and dynamic country,” he said.

The annual celebration brought together different Chinese living in Rwanda and diplomats representing their respective missions in the country, as well as national leaders and Friends of China.

This year also marks the 40th anniversary of China’s reform. This reform saw China become one of the world’s most influential nations in the world. Today, the country’s economy is the second largest in the world.

China is also the largest industrial producer, largest trader in goods, and largest holder of foreign exchange reserves.

The celebration follows Chinese President Xi Jinping’s state visit to Rwanda, the first of its kind by a Chinese head of state to Rwanda.

The visit saw Rwanda sign 15 bilateral agreements and memorandum of understanding with the Asian country.

The Chinese envoy reiterated China’s commitment to work with Rwanda to further match the development strategies and seek to harvest more fruits across multiple areas like public health, human resources training, e-commerce, mining, and law enforcement cooperation.

This year also marks 47 years of diplomatic relations between Rwanda and China.

Rwanda’s Minister for Finance and Economic Planning, Uzziel Ndagijimana, told guests that Rwanda and China relations have been growing fast in the past few years, and the two countries’ presidents have met three times in the last two years.

“During the three visits, our leaders held bilateral talks and agreed to elevate the relationship to a strategic level and deepen cooperation bilaterally, regionally, and on the continent,” he said.

“Today as we are gathered here, I’m happy to say that we are not only celebrating the founding of the People’s Republic of China, but also the relations between our two countries,” he added.

According to the minister, investments from China into Rwanda have grown in the last 12 years and now amount to $352.5 million in key sectors such as tourism, mining and construction.