China and South Africa sign cooperation agreements across many sectors


Chinese President Xi Jinping met with South African President Jacob Zuma in Beijing to discuss bilateral relations and pleged to increase cooperation in multiple sectors. CCTV America’s Su Yuting reported this story from Beijing.

Seven South African cabinet members, including the finance, trade and transport ministers, accompanied Zuma to Beijing. Xi stressed the importance relations between the two countries and said 2015 would be the “Year of China in South Africa”. One part of increased ties would be exchanges such as sending 100 youth leaders each year between the countries.

Zuma thanked China for helping in his country’s development, as well as for its efforts to combat the Ebola virus in West Africa. He said he hoped the African Regional Center of the New Development Bank, also known as the BRICS Development Bank, would launch soon in South Africa to push for a fair global financial order.

After the meeting, Chinese Vice-Foreign Minister Zhang Ming said the visit had given a new impetus to China-South Africa relations.

“The two leaders have exchanged views on various areas. They have also agreed to strengthen cooperation on security issues, and step up joint efforts in anti-terrorism, counter-piracy and combating trafficking crimes,” Ming said.

The two leaders charted a a course of cooperation from 2015-2024 with the presidents witnessing the signing of comprehensive 5-10 year cooperation plans in trade, agriculture, manufacturing, infrastructure building, nuclear power, and cultural exchanges.

This year marks the 16th anniversary of the establishment of diplomatic ties between China and South Africa.

Chinese automaker FAW expects big sales after opening South African plant

Many Chinese companies are expanding in South Africa. One of the first, Chinese carmaker FAW, opened their South African offices 20 years ago. CCTV America’s Sumitra Nydoo reported this story from Johhanesburg.

FAW is one of the largest vehicle manufacturers in the world, operating in 70 countries and employing just over a 120,000 people globally. When it first opened in South Africa, it was importing vehicles for sale, but now they have an assembly plant in country, said chief executive of FAW South Africa Yusheng Zhang.

The new, $60 million plant was opened earlier this year at Coega, South Africa’s flagship industrial zone in the Eastern Cape. It is one of the biggest investments made by a Chinese company in South Africa. The new facility is expected to produce around 600 construction and industrial trucks a year

“It’s really a good platform for us to start a business. So, we use South Africa as a centre and after we develop our products in South Africa and when we get mature then we also got a plan to export the units to the rest of the African countries through South Africa,” Zhang said.

The company offers one of the cheapest entry level cars in the market. South Africa’s has a highly competitive car manufacturing industry, with big names like BMW and VW already well established. This makes it extremely difficult for newcomers. But FAW has managed to find its footing fairly quickly by offering one of the cheapest small cars