Reporter’s Diary of China-Africa Media Forum
There’s no doubt that China is on an upward trajectory. As the world’s second biggest economy, it’s now playing a major role in the global arena.
As a correspondent with CGTN Africa, previously CCTV Africa, I have been fortunate to not only traverse and tell the African story, but China’s as well with an African perspective.
I have been to China three times – in 2013, 2017 and 2018. My first trip in 2013 was immediately after I joined CCTV, now CGTN, and it was more of training. The other two times, I was able to get a better feeling of what China is about because I was able to travel and work outside of Beijing. I traveled to Shanghai by bullet train – which is the fastest in the world, to Henan and Guangdong as well. This also gave me a chance to interact and engage with my Chinese colleagues.
Jane Kiyo at the Great Hall of the People in Beijing, China. /CGTN Photo
Perhaps the most memorable experience was covering the Two Sessions, which was in March this year. It was very insightful just getting to know and kind of understand China’s political process. Of course, I couldn’t digest it all in a month but it was certainly a beginning.
Traveling to China and working with Chinese colleagues certainly helps one to understand China and its people. It sheds light on their culture, their perspectives, who they are as people and China’s role here in Africa, where its footprints are on almost every country on the continent in building roads, stadiums, airports, health and agriculture.
The importance of what we do as media and journalists cannot be overstated. We are the link between the two people in China and Africa. We have the chance to bring China to Africa and Africa to China through our different mediums; spreading information, education and entertainment. One of the things that stands out between the two countries is culture, where the two can engage and learn from each other given the diversity in both.
Jane Kiyo raises a question to Foreign Minister Wang Yi during a press conference. /CGTN Photo
There’s no doubt relations between China and Africa have continued to grow and deepen over the years. I remember that press conference by Foreign Minister Wang Yi during the Two Sessions where he said the China-Africa bond is unbreakable.
This September, Beijing will host the Forum on China-Africa Cooperation (FOCAC) Summit, which is meant to open dialogue in areas of cooperation between the two in different fields. CGTN will be on hand to report this from all angles. Hosting such meetings and prioritizing Africa is one way to enhance those relations but also, on a personal level, I think the more people-to-people exchanges we have between Chinese and Africans, and visits between the two nations, the more it will encourage understanding of each other.