On the afternoon of September 1, 2023, President Xi Jinping held talks at the Great Hall of the People with President of Benin Patrice Athanase Guillaume Talon who is in China for a state visit. The two heads of state announced the establishment of a strategic partnership between China and Benin.
Xi Jinping pointed out that recent years have witnessed sound momentum of development in China-Benin relations, with solid progress in practical cooperation between the two countries. The two sides understand and support each other on issues involving their respective core interests and major concerns, and maintain sound communication and coordination on multilateral occasions. The friendship between the two peoples has taken deeper roots in the hearts of the people. China attaches great importance to the development of China-Benin relations and stands ready to work with Benin to step up interactions at all levels, deepen friendly and mutually beneficial cooperation in various fields, and continuously elevate China-Benin relations to new heights.
Xi Jinping profoundly expounded on the essential substance of Chinese modernization, stressing that China has blazed a modernization path different from that of the West, and the key lies in always bearing in mind China's national conditions and staying committed to the path of socialism with Chinese characteristics that suits China's national conditions. China supports Benin in independently exploring a development path that suits its national conditions and realizing the Benin-2025 Alafia Vision as soon as possible. China is ready to work with Benin to enhance exchanges on governance experience, share experience in reform and development, firmly support each other, and achieve common development and revitalization. China encourages Chinese enterprises to conduct investment cooperation in Benin, and Benin is welcome to make full use of the Global Trade in Services Summit, the China-Africa Economic and Trade Expo and other large-scale expos to sell more of its quality specialties into the Chinese market. China is ready to work with Benin to maintain close people-to-people and cultural exchanges, strengthen cooperation in education, training, medical and health care, and other fields, and continue to support Luban Workshop cooperation. The two sides should also strengthen counter-terrorism security cooperation, keep close coordination on international affairs, safeguard the common interests of developing countries and international fairness and justice, and maintain regional and world peace and development.
Xi Jinping pointed out that this year marks the 10th anniversary of the principle of sincerity, real results, amity and good faith he put forth for China's policy toward Africa. Over the past decade, China has all along treated African friends with sincerity and wholeheartedly provided support for Africa's development, making China-Africa cooperation a fine example of South-South cooperation and international cooperation with Africa. China supports Africa in becoming an important pole in the world's political, economic and cultural development. China is ready to create new opportunities for Africa with its own new development, and will work with Benin and other African brothers to implement the outcomes of the Forum on China-Africa Cooperation, and seek greater synergy between the Belt and Road Initiative and the Global Development Initiative on the one side, and the African Union's Agenda 2063 and African countries' development strategies on the other. China supports Africa in realizing economic recovery and sustainable development, and will join hands with the African side to build a China-Africa community with a shared future in the new era.
Talon said that China is a great friend of Benin, and the two peoples enjoy a profound and sincere friendship. High-quality cooperation between Benin and China yields mutual benefit and win-win results, and it will effectively boost Benin's industrialization process and help Benin better achieve national development. There is no one-size-fits-all model for democracy, and true democracy should be the one that benefits all people. In this regard, China has set a fine example for other countries. Through its own efforts and struggles, China has not only scored remarkable achievements and enhanced the well-being of the Chinese people, but also provided valuable help and made important contributions to other countries' efforts to pursue development. Benin has benefited a lot from China's governance experience and stands ready to build a true strategic partnership with China, deepen mutually beneficial cooperation in various fields between the two countries, and strive to achieve national development and prosperity as China does. Benin firmly pursues the one-China policy, and supports the Global Development Initiative, the Global Security Initiative, and the Global Civilization Initiative proposed by President Xi Jinping. Benin is ready to work with China to maintain close communication and cooperation, actively advance Belt and Road cooperation, and promote the building of a community with a shared future for mankind.
After the talks, the two heads of state jointly witnessed the signing of multiple bilateral cooperation documents in such areas as deepening Belt and Road cooperation, green development, digital economy, agricultural food, and health.
The two sides issued the Joint Statement on Establishing a Strategic Partnership between the People's Republic of China and the Republic of Benin.
Prior to the talks, Xi Jinping held a welcome ceremony for Talon at the square outside the east gate of the Great Hall of the People.
Upon Talon's arrival, honor guards lined up in salutation. The two heads of state stepped onto a reviewing stand, and the military band played the national anthems of China and Benin. A 21-gun salute was fired at Tian'anmen Square. Accompanied by President Xi, Talon then reviewed the guard of honor of the People's Liberation Army and watched the march-past.
In the evening, Xi Jinping held a welcome banquet for Talon at the Golden Hall of the Great Hall of the People.
Wang Yi was present at the above events.