China and Africa to empower youth entrepreneurship

Chinese Ambassador to Djibouti Hu Bin delivers a speech at the opening ceremony of the China-Africa Youth Entrepreneur Forum in Djibouti on Thursday. [Photo by Zhang Chi/chinadaily.com.cn]

China will continue to cooperate with Djibouti and other African countries on empowering Africa's youth and the promotion of entrepreneurship in the continent to contribute to the realization of African Union's Agenda 2063, said Chinese ambassador to Djibouti.

Speaking at the opening ceremony of African Youth Innovation and Entrepreneur Program of the Center of Innovation and Maritime Excellence, as well as the China-Africa Youth Entrepreneur Forum, in Djibouti on Thursday, Hu Bin said China has always attached great importance on the empowerment of Africa's youth with a view to supporting African countries' efforts to pursue their national development and prosperity in an autonomous and sustainable way.

China will continue its support to empower Africa's youth through a wide range of measures such as high education, professional training, job creation and business opportunity, Hu said.

"The African Union's Agenda 2063 duly recognizes the youth as the driving force of the continent's targeted transformation. Djibouti and other African countries all regard their youth, women and men, as their greatest national asset, the empowerment of youth and the fulfillment of their potential always stands high as an important goal in their respective national development plan," he said.

The Center of Innovation and Maritime Excellence, jointly established by China Merchants Group and Djibouti Ports and free zones authority, is open to all the talented youth in Djibouti and neighboring countries of the region for their profession and business development. It is a pragmatic measure to implement the vision of the leaders of the two countries, Hu said.

It is planned that 150 youths from Djibouti and other countries in East Africa will be trained in the center over the next five years to become business leaders. A total of 30 young entrepreneurs from Djibouti, Ethiopia, Kenya and Uganda have been selected and admitted for the first session of the African Youth Innovation and Entrepreneur Program for this year.

Ismail Omar Guelleh, president of Djibouti, said the establishment of the Center of Innovation and Maritime Excellence is a very important step for Djibouti-China cooperation because it will make Djibouti a place of training open to the world.

"The main objective of this center will be to help Djibouti improve

its position on the world stage by training a qualified workforce, which is essential to make our country a major logistics and trading platform and a world-class business center," he said while delivering a keynote speech at the opening ceremony via video.

Miao Jianmin, chairman of China Merchants Group, said the missions of the African Youth Innovation and Entrepreneur Program include promoting employment and entrepreneurship among African youth, guiding industry growth, diversifying the African economy and promoting sustainable growth for the continent.

"The African Youth Innovation and Entrepreneur Program will be rooted in Djibouti and fully explore the advantages of Djibouti's strategic location to bring in excellent young talents from various African countries in order to promote economic growth for Djibouti and the region," he said.

"I believe the program will not only become another example of cooperation in enhancing the China-Djibouti and the China-Africa friendships, but also serve as a strong talent base for the realization of Vision Djibouti 2035."

Editor: Li Shimeng
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