Text by Wu Shouqiang
“Africa holds great potential for nongovernmental trade,” remarked Wu Jiaqi, president of the Wenzhou Enterprises Chamber of Commerce in Beijing (WECCB).
Founded in May 2007, WECCB, with more than 2,000 members, is a public organization certified by the Beijing Administration of Civil Affairs. Since its founding, it has developed business in a diverse realm covering finance, real estate, catering, construction, logistics, trade and commerce, aviation, automobiles, investment, science and technology, garments, and electric appliances. Based in Beijing, it has developed into a world-class commercial chamber providing an array of services for China’s capital, as well as Zhe-jiang Province, from which it hails, and other parts of the country and the world.
To learn more about the First Forum on China-Africa Local Government Cooperation sponsored by WECCB, China Pictorial (CP) conducted an exclusive interview with President Wu Jiaqi.
CP: Can you explain why WECCB sponsors such a forum?
Wu: We think the Forum is a good opportunity for businessmen in Wenzhou to better understand Africa today. Business starts with friendship, and it can’t be successful and permanent without a platform for becoming closer friends. We believe that the biggest differences between China and Africa in economic structure are very complementary. For example, there are few garment industries in Africa, which we can easily supplement. Intensification of communication between both sides can certainly enhance the mutual exchange of in-demand products. As a matter of fact, we’ve come across many problems caused by the lack of a proper platform for communication, a consistent mechanism to deal with different kinds of issues.
One thing is very important: communication between people. We wish to exchange ideas with a variety of groups to inspire smooth, long-term future cooperation. It is essential to intensify non-governmental exchange to boost our trade in days to come.