Kenya signs a statement of intent between Africa governments and China
Kenya has signed a Letter of Intent on the Establishment of a China-Africa Environmental Cooperation Centre.
The Environmental Cooperation Centre will be a platform for partnership that involves African countries and China, the private sector, research institutions, intergovernmental organizations, and other actors.
It will provide the knowledge and capacity to support environmental management in the quest to achieve the 2030 Global Agenda and the Sustainable Development Goals, Africa’s Agenda 2063, and China’s Green Belt and Road Initiative.
Speaking on Monday during the signing ceremony on behalf of Africa at the United Nation Environment Assembly meeting in Nairobi, Environment Cabinet Secretary, Prof. Judi Wakhungu said the initiative was of significant interest to Africa as it signals the strengthening of cooperation between China and Africa in the area of environment.
“Africa is blessed with a diversity of environmental resources that can propel its sustainable development efforts and transform the region. However, for this to happen, there is need to support transfer and adoption of appropriate technology as well as improve access to affordable financing,” she said
The CS noted that China has made tremendous and unparalleled progress in its efforts to develop, promote and share environmental technology, skills and knowledge.
Wakhungu said the forum on China-Africa Cooperation, and the Belt and Road Initiative, are mutual benefits which African countries and China could take advantage of through the establishment of an environmental cooperation Centre as platform for mutual technology exchange and capacity building.
She added that the establishment of the Environmental Cooperation Centre is a further step in strengthening cooperation between regions and countries as well as with the UN system.
“ We must be champions for change and deliver a world that is stable, secure and prosperous, where no one is left behind, and where all decisions are underpinned by the principles of social, economic and environmental sustainability”, she said
Wakhungu thanked the Ministry of Environmental Protection of the People’s Republic of China, the Government of Kenya, and UN Environment colleagues for convening the signing ceremony.
The establishment of China-Africa Environmental Cooperation Centre is a pledge that resulted from The Johannesburg Summit and the sixth Ministerial Conference of the Forum on China-Africa Cooperation (FOCAC) held in Johannesburg from 3 to 5 December 2015.
It contributes to the implementation of the Johannesburg Action Plan (2016-2018) as part of the efforts to lift the China-Africa relationship to one of a comprehensive strategic cooperative partnership.
By Wangari Ndirangu