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China's Investment in Africa to Reach US$2 Bln
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Investment from China to Africa is expected to reach US$2 billion in 2007, Donald Kaberuka, president of the African Development Bank (ADB), said on Saturday.

Over the past six years, trade volume between China and Africa quintupled, he said while meeting reporters prior to the 2007 Annual Meetings of the Board of Governors of African Development Bank Group to be held in Shanghai from May 16 to 17.

Figures released by the Chinese authorities showed that investment from China in Africa had totaled US$11.7 billion by the end of 2006.

Trade volume between the two sides hit US$55.5 billion in 2006, maintaining an annual growth rate of more than 30 percent in the past five years.

"Something was happening in Africa over the past six years, which was not happening for 30 years," Kaberuka said. "The economic growth picked up in an incredible way, and we are appealing to African partners to come not just for oil and gas, but for other opportunities."

According to the ADB, economic activity in Africa is estimated to rise nearly 5.5 percent in 2006 and is expected to grow by 5.9 percent and 5.7 percent in 2007 and 2008 respectively. Oil-exporting countries are outpacing others by a substantial margin.

The ADB is an institution linking China and Africa, and plays an important role as a catalyst of their relationship, the president said.

Asked about expectations for the meetings, he said that the ADB members need more cooperation to examine ways for the bank to play a bigger role in promoting both the private and public sectors in Africa.

"China is the fastest growing country with the largest market in the world, and we come to know how this happens," Kaberuka said.

"We also come to consolidate the links between China and Africa following the China-Africa summit (in Beijing)," he said, noting that he was looking forward to constructive discussions on all subjects of common interests with the participants, apart from trade and investment.

(Xinhua News Agency May 13, 2007)

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