China proposes to increase its medical assistance to African countries, as one of the many ways to strengthen its friendship with the continent.
This was revealed during the official opening of the Fifth Session of the 12th National Committee of the Chinese Peoples’ Political Consultative Conference (CPPCC) on Friday.
Presenting a report on the work of the Standing Committee of the National Committee of the CPPCC, chairman of the committee Mr Yu Zhengesheng said strengthening medical assistance to Africa was one of the agendas for 2017.
He said China’s diplomatic work would continue to promote high level exchange of visits with foreign affairs counterparts and carry out exchange and cooperation with relevant foreign institutions and international organisations at various levels.
“We will offer suggestions on improving and strengthening China’s medical assistance efforts in Africa, on strengthening the mutual foundation for joint efforts to build the Belt and Road Initiative and on promoting deeper mutual opening of higher level dialogue,” he said.
The initiative of the Belt and Road was put forward by Chinese President Xi Jinping during his overseas visit in 2013 to connect Asian, European and African markets.
Mr Yu said China was going to carry out public diplomacy and cultural exchanges and increase the CPPCC’s international communication with a focus on informing others about the system of multi-party cooperation and political consultations that existed under the leadership of the Chinese Communist Party (CPC).
“China will also explain its proposition for improving global economic governance and its idea of building an international community of share future, so as to create a sound external environment,” he said. 
Reflecting on 2016, Mr Yu said the year was important in the rejuvenation of China and attributed this to the leadership of President Xi.
“First, we increased our political awareness of the need to maintain a high degree of unity within the CPC central committee, with Comrade Xi at its core,” he said.
“Second, we continued to devote our main efforts to making proposals and suggestions for the implementation of the 13th Five Year Plan.”
Mr Yu said in 2016, China strengthened the fundamental role of the CPPCC’s research and studies.
“We continued to give priority to improving research and studies in an effort to better perform our duties,” he said. “We emphasised visiting local communities, analysing representative cases and basing proposals on facts and data.
“We managed specific problems by tailoring solutions to local conditions. We also remained committed to the principle of serving the people and worked hard to improve their well-being, as well as social development, among other things.”
In 2017, the CPPCC proposed, among other things, to put into practice the principles from President Xi’s major speeches and his new concepts, ideas and strategies for the country’s governance; promote balanced economic, political, cultural, social and ecological progress.
The CPPCC will also work on strengthening and improving its democratic oversight and focus on its priorities.
The CPPCC is a multi party cooperation and political consultation organ under the CPC’s leader- ship.
It has a national committee and local committees with a functioning term of five years and they meet every year.
Over 2 000 members of the CPPCC national committee are attending the conference, which closes on March 13.