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Zambian youth hail China's Africa capacity building initiative

September 17, 2018

Abstract : Young Zambians are happy and excited over China's decision to introduce a capacity building initiative for Africa.

LUSAKA, Sept. 15 (Xinhua) -- Young Zambians are happy and excited over China's decision to introduce a capacity building initiative for Africa.

The young Zambians are excited and hopeful that young Africans will have an opportunity to access education as well as be afforded an opportunity to be trained in entrepreneurship.

This, they feel, will go a long way in ensuring that young Africans contribute effectively to the socio-economic development of their respective countries.

During the recently held Forum on China-Africa Cooperation (FOCAC) summit in Chinese capital Beijing, China announced eight initiatives to run for the next three years and beyond aimed at building a closer China-Africa community with a shared future in the new era.

Among the initiatives is the capacity building initiative in which China will share more of its development practices with Africa and support cooperation with the continent on economic and social development planning.

On the capacity building initiative, China will establish 10 Luban Workshops in Africa to provide vocational training for young Africans as well as support opening of a China-Africa innovation cooperation center to promote youth innovation and entrepreneurship.

Under the initiative, a tailor-made program will also be carried out to train 1,000 high-caliber Africans. China will also provide Africa with 50,000 government scholarships and 50,000 training opportunities through seminars and workshops. China will also invite 2,000 young Africans to visit China for exchanges.

"Of the eight initiatives which they plan to implement to enhance and deepen the ties between Africa and China, I feel of personal interest to me is the fifth initiative that is talking about capacity building," Jacob Longwe, a third year student pursuing Cultural Studies with Chinese Language at the University of Zambia said.

He said that capacity building is the prerequisite for other pursuits such as industrial production, infrastructure connectivity and health care service.

According to him, the capacity building initiative will result in the building of African expertise which will be able to push Africa's development agenda forward.

He said it was gratifying that China wanted to share its development practices with Africa, adding that getting best practices on how China has developed will result in Africa jump-starting its development as well.

Lazaruous Lombe, another third year student pursuing Education Psychology with Chinese Language at the same university is also elated by China's decision to build the capacity of African countries.

According to him, equipping Africans with innovation and entrepreneurship skills will help the continent take its development agenda to another level.

"With regard to the fifth point that has been raised which has to do with capacity building, that is targeting the young people. Personally I believe that it is a very good move in that I believe that every country's success in terms of development or improvement in any sector of development starts with skills," he said.

He added that Africa was currently grappling with the problem of high youth unemployment as well as lack of education opportunities for many young people, many of whom were engaged in vices such as drug abuse.

Kerris Habwacha, another third year student also welcomed the initiative, saying it will bring a lot of benefits to the African continent.

"The idea of promoting this capacity building is actually welcome and it is very important to the African continent in the sense that it is going to create employment to the young Africans and also innovation in the young people," he said.

The initiative, he said, will also bring development in the education sector because of the vocational trainings program, adding that China will be able to impart into Africans its technological and innovation advancement.

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