China signs several agreements with the Democratic Republic of Congo



AA / Kinshasa / Pascal Mulegwa

The Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC) signed several agreements with China on Friday, the third day of a state visit by its president, Felix Shisekedi.

“The signed agreements are: memorandum of understanding on investments and ecological exploitation of natural resources, memorandum of understanding on information exchange and cooperation, and memorandum of understanding on cooperation in the development of the digital economy,” said the Congolese minister. Minister of Foreign Affairs, Christophe Lutundula, evaluates the texts signed with his Chinese counterpart Qin Gang in the presence of the two presidents, Felix Tshisekedi and Xi Jinping.

The other two agreements are about “promoting the development of green growth and cooperation between the two national TV channels, CGTN and RTNC,” said the head of Congolese diplomacy.

According to the text of the joint statement, seen by Anadolu, the Congolese side is ready to improve the business environment, provide favorable conditions for Chinese companies to operate in the country and effectively protect their legitimate rights and interests.

Chinese companies, meanwhile, must “comply with DRC laws and regulations.”

Beijing should continue to “encourage Chinese companies to speed up the implementation of agreed infrastructure projects and strengthen mining cooperation with the DRC.”

In his opening remarks at the bilateral working session, Chinese President Xi Jinping emphasized his desire to consolidate “pragmatic cooperation” with the DRC.

“I believe in creating more opportunities between our countries and moving bilateral relations to a comprehensive strategic partnership,” the Chinese leader said.

Tsiskedi said he appreciates, for his part, “China’s history and its struggle to protect its sovereignty, as well as the DRC and China’s tradition of non-interference, which is also a shared value.”

China has announced an emergency aid of $1 million to help the affected population of Kalehe, affected by floods that killed more than 500 people and left more than 5,000 missing on May 4. South Kivu.

The joint statement did not mention the revision of a 2007 agreement between the DRC and a group of Chinese companies that blesses the exploitation of minerals in southeastern Congo against the construction of infrastructure by the Chinese side. This agreement, questioned by the Financial Inspectorate General (IFG), involved the construction of $3 billion worth of infrastructure by the Chinese side.

The investigation revealed serious financial embezzlement and found that the Chinese took out only $822 million over 15 years, while they exploited the minerals and invested nearly $11 billion.

Tsiskedi, who has been in power since 2019, announced the renegotiation of this agreement in order to rebalance interests.

Source: AA

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