The Global Development Initiative (GDI) proposed by Chinese President Xi Jinping last year could help alleviate development challenges faced by developing countries, a Zambian expert has said.
The initiative, which advocates that development must come first and be people-centered, could go a long way in contributing to the attainment of the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals, said Isaac Mwaipopo, the executive director of the Center for Trade and Policy Development in Zambia.
“It is our appeal that African countries as well as the People’s Republic of China, can actually work together towards ensuring that some of these aspirations are actualized,” he said in a recent interview with Xinhua.
The expert said that China plays a vital role in the development efforts worldwide and has provided critical infrastructure, agriculture, finance, science and technology support for developing countries.
He stressed that countries like Zambia have seen massive support from China over the years.
China has been a strategic development partner for several African countries, including Zambia, he said, urging governments to continue developing and nurturing ties with the East Asian country.
Acknowledging that China has a clear plan for its development and engagement with the world, the expert expressed concern that most African countries have struggled to deliver on development.
Mwaipopo said Africa was grappling with many challenges that the COVID-19 pandemic has worsened.
He said the pandemic has disrupted several economic activities, with African countries failing to meet the needs of their citizens, including in employment.
He urged countries on the continent to work together in finding solutions to tackle pandemic challenges, adding that working with cooperating partners like China was vital.