China and Africa share many similarities. Both are emerging economies, and both value exchange of information to spur development. In 1984, China Shenyang International Economic & Technical Cooperation Corporation (CSYIC) was established with the approval of the State Council to undertake international contracted projects, state aided foreign projects, export of labor services, export and import, and to establish overseas single-proprietorship and joint venture enterprises.
During its 20 years of existence, the CSYIC has frequently appeared on the list of Top 100 Chinese Enterprises. Its income from international contracted projects amounts to more than US $600 million, and it has sent 35,000 workers to provide labor service overseas. The company was named one of the Top 225 international contractors for 8 years successively by American publication Engineering News- Record.
The success of CSYIC has greatly profited from its development in Africa, as Africa has always been the company's most dynamic market. Since the first foreign-aid project was undertaken in Burkina Faso in 1987, the company has distributed its business over 20 African countries and regions.
CSYIC's main business in Africa is contracted projects, such as the Burkina Faso Dolly Hospital, Cameroon Douala University extension, Togo Kara Hospital, and Atelier de Fabrication du Matétiel Agricole (AFMA) du Niger. CSYIC's branch in Seychelles built swimming pools, office buildings, and water and electricity supply lines.
CSYIC also makes it its business to promote Sino-African trade relations. The company has developed trade relations with Botswana and Egypt, established offices in Nairobi, Kenya and Johannesburg, South Africa to purchase local cement, construction equipment and timber. It also provides medical equipment for Locsa Hospital in Benin and transports equipment and raw material through Tanzania Port and on the Tanzania-Zambia Railway. The China Shenyang Commodities Exhibition Fair held in Ouagadougou, capital of Burkina Faso, was a great success.
Investment in a shoe factory in Kabwei, Zambia and a biscuit venture in East Cape Town, South Africa is another realm CSYIC has delved into. Along with developing technology, the company dispatches engineers to assist African projects in maintaining equipment and training personnel in Mauritania, Rwanda, Ghana, Zaire, Uganda, Cape Verde and Guinea. For 12 years, CSYIC has sent maintenance personnel to Kara Hospital of Togo to repair medical equipment.
CSYIC believes that the friendship between China and Africa and that their similar anti-colonial and anti-imperialist history enhances cooperation. The Chinese government encourages enterprises to enter Africa, and governments of African countries provide favorable conditions. In Yaoundé, Cameroon, the local government provides housing for the CSYIC office free of charge and CSYIC lent foreign exchange to the Seychelles loan interest. African countries are rich in natural and human resources, that are complemented by Chinese industrial technology. CSYIC also attributes its success to the cultural cohesiveness of the two areas. Chief representatives Kong Xiangyi and Gu Sijin worked in Africa for more than a decade, and their experiences and skills have earned them a good reputation and respect from Africans.
(China.org.cn December 10, 2003)