Chinese Vice-President Li Yuanchao was due here Wednesday for an official visit during which he is expected to sign eight agreements on Chinese grants and loans to Zambia.
Li will be leading a 21-member entourage of senior government officials and Communist Party members and will be in Zambia until 21 June to strengthen relations between China and Zambia.
Li, the most senior Chinese leader to visit Zambia since President Michael Sata came to office in 2011, will be in the country at the invitation of the Zambian vice-president Guy Scott.
The Chinese Vice-President will hold private talks with President Sata, and also meet first president Kenneth Kaunda, as well as take part in the photographic exhibition on the results of cooperation between Zambia and China in the last 50 years.
“The purpose of the visit is to commemorate the golden jubilee of the Zambian independence and the 50th anniversary of the establishment of diplomatic ties between China and Zambia and to further promote government-to-government and party-to-party relations between our two countries,” outgoing Chinese ambassador to Zambia Zhou Yuxiao told journalists in Lusaka.
According to the Chinese ambassador, other projects to be considered by Li were grants to be given to Zambia, borehole drilling, Levy Mwanawasa hospital expansion, Kenneth Kaunda International Airport and the cooperation in wild animal and forest cooperation.
Zhou who said China wanted to assist Zambia with its road network, health sector and energy sector, said China was also contemplating assisting Zambia with more mobile hospitals.
China’s investment in Zambia rose to US$3.8 billion last year, from the US$3.4 billion in 2012.