Ghana’s Minister of Foreign Affairs and Regional Integration, Shirley Ayorkor Botchwey, has observed the need for peace in China, saying the prosperity of the African continent is closely linked with China’s peace and stability.
She made the remarks in a speech at the opening session of a seminar on China’s development and Hong Kong Special Administrative Region.
The seminar was organized by the Institute of Economic Affairs (IEA) on Thursday, October 31, 2019.
According to the Minister, “while one cannot deny the geopolitical dimension or significance of the crisis in Hong Kong, the fact remains that Africa’s prosperity is closely linked with China’s peace and stability.
She explained that one of the cardinal principles of Ghana’s foreign policy is respect for the right of self-determination of all peoples.
At the same time, she said “we believe in the peaceful resolution of disputes within and among sovereign entities.”
Commenting on the Hong Kong crisis and its economic impact, the Foreign Minister indicated that Hong Kong was one of the main drivers of China’s prosperity.
Citing some studies, she indicated that the Ministry of Commerce of China has recorded that over 58 percent (around US$70 billion) of China’s non-financial outbound direct investment flow went to Hong Kong in 2018.
Apparently a great amount of Chinese investment does not remain in Hong Kong; it is either repatriated to China as profits and funds and sent elsewhere in the rest of the world, she added.
She noted that it is further claimed that mainland companies take such a detour with their investments through Hong Kong in order to take advantage of the territory’s favourable regulatory environment and available professional services.
By extension, the economies of many African countries, including Ghana, continue to benefit greatly from their trade with China as well as massive investments in infrastructure, according to Hon Ayorkor Botchwey.
” A look at the range of development goals covered in the Beijing Plan of Action for the period 2019-2021, which was adopted by our Heads of State at the Forum on China – Africa Cooperation in September, 2018, equally underscore the depth of relations that China and Africa want to build,” she explained.
She recounted the key strategic initiatives adopted by the Summit some of which are an industrial promotion initiative, infrastructure connectivity initiative, trade facilitation initiative, green development initiative, capacity building initiative, health care initiative, people-to-people exchange initiative, peace and security initiative.
The seminar focused on China’s development and the future of Hong Kong, as well as China as the new development partner of Africa.
It was held at the Ambassador Birgit Storgaard Dialogue Centre, IEA.