China-Africa Media Forum Adopts Declaration -To Promote Shared Vision Of Sustainable Development                                                

BEIJING – The 5th Forum on China Africa Media Cooperation has expressed a passionate need to explore areas of greater cooperation so as to advance the cause of promoting mutual learning opportunities for understanding of their respective civilizations, and for deepening the China-Africa comprehensive strategic and cooperative partnership as well as continuing to uphold the spirit of China –Africa friendship and cooperation. The Forum holds that spirit of China –Africa friendship and cooperation is anchored on sincere friendship and equality, win-win for mutual benefit and the fostering a new vision of achieving common development and greater international influence of the two media fraternities. Deanna Seakor reports from Beijing.

The expression was made through a Joint Declaration adopted during an elaborate meeting held on August 25, 2022 in Beijing, China in a combined online/offline mode which was co-hosted by the National Radio and Television Administration of China, the People’s Government of Beijing Municipality and the African Union of Broadcasting. The meeting attracted more than 240 delegates from the government departments, media institutions and 75 journalists that are on a study tour in China, audio-video enterprises, diplomatic missions in China, as well as representatives of the African Union Commission and the African Union of Broadcasting.

In its 10th year, the Forum reviewed the challenges and achievements over the year and graded its existence as one living up to the expectation, which achieved a number of success stories highlighted, among which the Satellite TV Project for 10,000 African Villages and the Integrated Digital Switch-over Project that has been acceleratory to the development of the broadcasting sector in Africa and for the benefit to the African people.

The Forum urged the participants to support new developments in the media field that serve China’s Long-Range Objectives Through the Year 2035the African Union’s Agenda 2063 and the development strategies of all African countries and also to blaze a new trail in China-Africa media cooperation by implementing the Forum on China-Africa Cooperation – Dakar Action Plan (2022-2024). Implementation of the Forum on China-Africa Cooperation – Dakar Action Plan has built on content creation and technological innovation and boosting convergent media development and digital economy.

Towards greater cooperation, the Forum adopted a declaration among which is to “Enhance dialogue and exchange of ideas, and to strengthen collaboration in international communication. Chinese and African media will continue to develop strategies and regulatory systems in the light of our economic, social and cultural development. We will continue to disseminate news and information to the international community that is panoramic, true, objective and just. We will support each other on major issues related to our core interests and of common concern in the international arena. We will strive for a growing influence of Chinese and African media, and advocate humanity’s common values of peace, development, equity, justice, democracy and freedom.

“Fulfilling media responsibility and making contributions to global development, we highly agree that development holds the key to solving various difficult problems and delivering better lives to the people. Media of both sides will advocate for and take part in global development. We will strive to promote the vision of sustainable development among the general public, contributing to forging a global development partnership and fostering a development paradigm featuring benefits for all, balance coordination, inclusiveness, win-win cooperation, and common prosperity.

Media of both sides intend to “Promote innovation in content creation and present compelling stories of China-Africa friendship. In particular, those stories should reflect our common struggle against the pandemic, and our mutual support and joint development. We will support the creation of high-quality audio-video content on those themes and co-produce TV dramas, documentaries, animations and short videos that reflect the economic and social development of China and Africa and our friendly relationship. We will continue to broadcast each other’s programs to further enrich the cultural life of our people.

Chinese and African media will continue will “Deepen technical cooperation and facilitate the digital development of media. China is committed to continued support and assistance, wherever possible, to the digital transformation of radio and television in Africa. The two sides will actively communicate and cooperate in the application of new technologies in the media field such as mobile Internet, 5G, big data, cloud computing and artificial intelligence. We will share development experience and jointly explore effective ways of communication and new service models in the context of omnimedia so as to promote common prosperity and development of China and Africa’s media industries.

The Chinese and African media will further promote cooperation in personnel training and strengthen exchanges among young media talents. “We will continue to deepen cooperation in human resource development in the fields of media management, content creation, technology research & development, and online audio-video communication. We will support leading institutions and individuals in the Chinese and African media industries to carry out innovative cooperation and strengthen dialogue and communication among young people so as to inject more vitality into China-Africa media cooperation in the new era”, the declaration said.

A Somali journalist, Mohamed Osman Abdi of the Somali National News Agency who spoke on behalf of his colleagues that are on a study tour in China, thanked the Chinese government for the opportunities afforded them to benefit from the cooperation between China and Africa as well as the Chinese International Press Communication Center for the role in the event

While recounting his own personal experience with benefiting from the program having first travelled to China in 2019 along with 33 African Journalists mainly from public institutions, he said after the Chinese Government established the China-Africa Media Exchange Program, a lot of fruitful results were achieved in terms of people to people exchanges, culture, experience and promoting trade and relations between Africa and China.

“On the Africa side, Journalists are making a commendable masterpiece regarding the media cooperation to flourish by focusing on issues of common concerns and mutual benefits, in order to witness vibrant Sino-Africa relations. Notably, these journalists covered their governments’ support for Beijing’s ‘One China’ policy and expressed solidarity during the Covid-19 pandemic in 2019”, he said.

The Vice Minister for National Radio and Television Administration Lu Yucheng who also spoke at the occasion expressed excitement for the successful hosting of the event and reflected that over the past decade, the Chinese and African media have fulfilled their responsibilities and missions of communicating China-Africa friendship and bolstering human progress.

Chinese President Xi Jinping in his congratulatory letter to the event noted that China and African countries are a community with a shared future that go through thick and thin together. He said the media of both sides shoulder major responsibilities regarding enhancing mutual trust and cooperation, upholding world peace and promoting global development.

Xi further said since it was founded ten years ago, the Forum has provided an important platform for Chinese and African media to facilitate dialogue and cooperation, and played an active role in promoting exchanges of civilizations, and deepening the comprehensive strategic cooperative partnership between China and Africa.

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