(August, 24, 2019, Beijing, China): A Liberian scholar and Assistant Professor of International Relations and Foreign Policy Studies at the Ibraham Badamasi Babangida (IBB) Graduate Program of International Studies of the University of Liberia, Professor Josephus Moses Gr ay, has arrived in the Chinese capital of Beijing to participate in this year’s Eighth Meeting of China-Africa Think Tanks Forum which bring together about 300 Chinese-African academics including proven professors, researchers, intellectuals, senior emissaries and professor emeritus.
The China-Africa Think Tanks Forum which runs from August 25-28 (Sunday-Tuesday) takes place at Diaoyutai State Guesthouse, Beijing, China. The international forum formally started on Sunday with the delegation holding talks with officials of African Affairs of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of the People’s Republic of China (PRC) while the main venue of the forum is the Diaoyutai State Guesthouse in Beijing.
Professor Gray, an official representative of Liberian academics, will deliver an instructive power-point presentation on the topic: New Era of China-Africa Friendship and Cooperation: A Unique Opportunity towards Building a Great Community with a Shared Future. Emphasis will be put on the current international situations, solidarity, and cooperation among developing countries, the course of development of China-Africa relations, and how to build an even stronger community with a shared future. Dr. Gray is scheduled to address the first plenary session.
Beijing’s forum will also attract Chinese and African diplomatic corps in Beijing, and officials of the Chinese Ministry of Foreign Affairs and other ministries and agencies of the Chinese government, is being held under the Theme: “China and Africa: Toward Even Stronger Community with a Shared Future”.
The UL Professor is expected to use the international podium to provide a cool and composed contrast to western journalists’ blustery demeanor and perception of China-Africa’s ties and analyzed the existing challenges facing current Sino-African relations and the outlook for development and areas of potential innovation in the next decade. The speech will rightly offer a subtle yet sharp rebuke of the global antiquated, anti-China-China new level of relations and recounts the numerous benefits of the ties existing between China and African in the content of win-win cooperation.
Professor Gray will provide some equilibriums of China-African long-standing unique relationship which has been a win-win situation and further discuss how China and Africa shared similar experiences, both having suffered from aggression, plunder and enslavement by colonialists and present a historical perspective of China-African relationship and how the relations ushered into a new era of all-round development that is having great impacts on the lives of millions on both fronts.
The speech which will be delivered through powerpoint presentations also will cover various topics Including developmental peace approach, which implies the replacement of the current hard-power and West-centric world with a soft power, multi-polar global order; industrialization pack and development co-operation, expressed in Beijing’s support for the African Union’s 2063 agenda; trade and investment, which involves substantial financial support for Africa’s industrialization and infrastructure building, roads, modern railways and airways, and people-to-people diplomacy, signified by the growing interaction which is mainly government-to-government, Chinese and African non-State actors.
For the record, this is Dr. Gray’s third time to be officially selected to attend and delivered a research paper on behalf of Liberian academics. Last year he attended two international conferences in Beijing, China, and Rabat, Morocco. He spoke on the topic: “China and Africa Countries’ Independent Exploration of Development Paths: Experience and Inspiration” at the 7th Meeting of the China-Africa Think Tank Forum in Beijing, China.
While the topic of his speech at the Rabat’s Academic Symposium was on the Theme: “Safeguarding World Peace, Promoting a New Era of a Common Development, Belt and Road a Community of a Shared Future”. This year’s February, he also delivered a power-point on behalf of the University of Liberia on the topic: Democratic governance and National Development: Lesson for the federal republic of Nigeria.
Interestingly, Professor Gray’s speech will stress the strength of unity and mutual trust and respectability, among the Chinese and African scholars, to encourage the current unique and admired ties between China and Africa. The speech will also promote respect for each other’s chosen paths, shared values, innovation, core interests, ideas and call for the full implementation of FOCAC’s ten plans, and how China-Africa Belonged to a Community of Shared Future and how the Sino-African relations ushered into a new era of shared future, hope and inspiration.
The UL professor will use the international podium to urge the academics to exchange ideas on promoting China-Africa cooperation in industrial capacity, infrastructure, and agriculture, ways of increasing the voice of Asian and African countries in the international stage, exchange of professors, enhance the roles Chinese and African think tanks played in political and economic development, and means of enhancing the communication and cooperation between China and Africa in the field of film, television and new media.
The Liberian professor will reiterate the need for African leaders and governments to institute industrialize policy based on shared values and principles; propounding that “Africa needs to formulate its own ideas and policies that marched the continent best practices, and not the western concept. They all agreed that Africa needs Industrialization and modernizations based on principles and shared values.
The speech will remind academics scholars that good development depends on good governance and unique social order depends on strong government and strong industrials, cautioning that Africa should not focus on what industrials take away but what Africa can gain from industrials for human development and general growth of the African continent.
Meanwhile, the objectives of the China-Africa Think Tank Forum are to promote Africa’s Global Economic Cooperation through sharing knowledge and research objectives on infrastructure, economic development and trade facilitation and initiating the process to establish global think tanks network committed to building great cooperation between China and African Countries.
The forum offers a window to explore the development of international relationships between countries and regions gives the global order a good opportunity to explore to what kind of relationship is being built between the Asian economic giant and the world’s poorest continent. The forum strengthens relations through the forum to promote research and exchanges among think tanks from both worlds. The forum establishes a mechanism for Chinese and African think tanks to exchange ideas and conduct cooperative work toward a deeper understanding of China-African relations.