Jean-Jacques Cornish

Africa will benefit from a Chinese COVID vaccine

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Beijing’s new ambassador to Pretoria says South Africa will benefit when China’s anti COVID vaccine goes out to the world.

Chen Xiadong was speaking at a webinar hosted by the National Press Club on the third volume by Xi Jinping on the governance of China and the 19th Central Committee of the Communist Party of China.

Introducing the envoy, Press Club  chairperson Val Boje refers to China as an important global force and friend of Africa and South Africa that had lifted 1,4 billion people out of poverty.

Ambassador Chen says Chairman Xi’s book covers  reform, development, stability, the state, foreign affairs and defence matters.

Xi talks about promoting win win cooperation with all countries including South Africa and rest of Africa to achieve a prosperous common future for all mankind.

China has since 1953 drawn up and implemented five year plans. It currently has identified and is working on medium term objectives up until the year 2035.

Chen says  China has become the major trading partner of 138 countries  by observing an approach of people first, leadership of the Chinese Communist Party, new paradigms, shared property and government proficiency.

As it grows, China presents greater opportunities to countries doing business with it.

“China’s door is opening and it will open even wider,” he says.

“In ten years, China has imported goods worth more than $22 trillion.”

CODID has taken the world by surprise.China is the first country to have overcome it and restored economic growth.

It has sent medical terms to 32 countries providing care, expertise, medicine and personal protection equipment.

“We are developing a vaccine and countries of Africa will be the first to benefit from it, “he says.

Chen says China has a special bond with South Africa. Chairman Xi has made three state visits to South Africa.

South Africa plans an important role in the Forum for China Africa Cooperation which is celebrating its 20th anniversary.

The webinar heard that China plans to strengthen exchanges and its shared future with Africa.

This will encompass a China-Africa community of health for all  as envisaged the the extraordinary China-Africa summit on COVID 19.

Common development will cover 5G communications, the digital economy, smart cities and clean and health environment.

“Chairman Xi says having clear water and green mountains is as valuable as having mountains of gold and silver,” says Chen.

Working for a shared ,prosperous future for all mankind, China will relieve pressure on African countries’ debt repayments as they battle to recover economically from the pandemic.

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Jean-Jacques Cornish is a journalist and broadcaster who has been involved in the media all his adult life.

Starting as a reporter on his hometown newspaper, he moved briefly to then Rhodesia before returning to South Africa to become a parliamentary correspondent with the South African Press Association. He was sent to London as Sapa’s London editor and also served as special correspondent to the United Nations. He joined the then Argus group in London as political correspondent.

Returning to South Africa after 12 years abroad, he was assistant editor on the Pretoria News for a decade before becoming editor of the Star and SA Times for five years.

Since 1999 he’s been an independent journalist writing and broadcasting – mainly about Africa – for Talk Radio 702 and 567 Cape
Talk, Radio France International, PressTV, Radio Live New Zealand, Business Day, Mail & Guardian, the BBC, Agence France Press,
Business in Africa, Leadership, India Today, the South African Institute for International Affairs and the Institute for Security Studies.

He has hosted current affairs talk shows on Talk Radio 702 and 567 Cape Talk. He appears as an African affairs pundit on SABC Africa and CNBC Africa.
He lectured in contemporary studies to journalism students at the Tshwane University of Technology and the University of Pretoria.

He speaks on African affairs to corporate and other audiences.
He has been officially invited as a journalist to more than 30 countries. He was the winner of the 2007 SADC award for radio journalism.

He’s been a member of the EISA team observing elections in Somaliland, Democratic Republic of Congo, Madagascar, Zimbabwe, Egypt and Tunsiai.

In October 2009 he headed a group of 39 African journalists to the 60th anniversary celebrations of the Peoples’ Republic of China.

In January 2010 he joined a rescue and paramedical team to earthquake struck Haiti.

He is immediate past president of the Alliance Francaise of Pretoria.

Jean-Jacques is a director of Giant Media. The company was given access to Nelson Mandela in his retirement years until 2009.
He is co-producer of the hour-long documentary Mandela at 90 that was broadcast on BBC in January 2009.