Chinese Premier Wen Jiabao sent a congratulatory message to the African Union (AU) upon the opening of its summit Monday in Sharm el Sheikh, Egypt.
"I wish to extend, on behalf of the Chinese government and in my own name, warm congratulations to" the 11th Ordinary Session of the AU Assembly, Wen said in the message.
He highlighted AU's role in upholding regional peace and stability, promoting African economic and social development and facilitating the African integration process.
"This year is one of special significance to the African Union which has made establishing the African Union Government its ultimate goal," the premier said.
Wen said the China-Africa relations continue to "enjoy fast and all-round growth with steady advancement of practical cooperation on various fronts."
The follow-up actions of the Beijing Summit of the Forum on China-Africa Cooperation have been successful and brought great benefits to both sides, he added.
Wen expressed his gratitude for the "invaluable support and assistance" provided by the governments and people of African countries over the devastating earthquake that hit China's Sichuan province.
He also wished African athletes every success in the upcoming Beijing Olympics.
(Xinhua News Agency June 30, 2008)