China has reaffirmed its commitment to the African continent, with foreign ministry spokesman Wang Wenbin citing an increase in direct investment and advances in medicine and other sectors.

“Over the past 20 years, the flow of China’s direct investment in Africa has been growing by more than 25 percent on a yearly average,” said Wenbin. “Despite COVID-19, China’s investment in Africa has increased from $2.71 billion in 2019 to $2.96 billion in 2020.”

The comments, made during a regular press briefing, followed a launch ceremony held last week by the China-Africa Business Council for its Report on Chinese Investment in Africa.

Wenbin said that, traditionally, Chinese companies have invested in labour-intensive manufacturing and industrial park building. The new areas of investment include technology, medical treatment and medicine, the digital economy and aviation.

That investment focuses on the strengths of African nations and the Chinese economy, but it benefits the entire global economy, Wenbin added.

“The investment of Chinese companies in Africa helps to smooth global industrial chains and facilitates exports from both sides,” he said. “Chinese companies, while achieving their own development, have been active in the transfer of technology, more local procurement, and local employment, making remarkable contributions to social stability and economic prosperity in African countries.”

The China-Africa Business Council was established in 2006. The first council office in Nigeria was opened earlier this year in Lagos.