President Biya arrived in Beijing yesterday, March 22 to a hectic welcome epitomised by a series of commitments from Xi Jinping to continue to work together.
President Paul Biya had a busy time yesterday on arrival at the Chinese capital of Beijing for the three-day State visit on the invitation of President Xi Jinping. Accompanied by his wife, Chantal Biya, the President whose plane touched down at the Beijing International Airport at exactly 1:45pm local time [6:45 am Cameroon time] was welcomed by Chinese Deputy Foreign Minister, Chen Xiaodong and a host of other dignitaries. Equally present at the airport were an impressive number of Cameroonians living in Beijing, a number one could hardly imagine.
The President on arrival at the residence provided for him had just time to discover his resting point and off he left for the Great Hall of the People where a solemn and highly colourful diplomatic ceremony was organised by the newly elected Xi Jinping to show reverence for his visit.
The ceremony which was organised at the Northern Wing of the hall and which witnessed the presence of the two First ladies, Chantal Biya of Cameroon and Peng Liyuan of China, was marked by the playing of the National Anthems of the two countries, animated by the band of the People's Liberation Army, the inspection of the mounted Guard of honour of the three armies of the People's Liberation Army [PLA] by the two Presidents and the introduction of the constituted corps of the two countries.
Children, about 70 of them, almost of the same age, were equally on hand chanting words of welcome to the President and waving flags of the two countries and flowers to the admiration of all who were present at the occasion.
President Paul Biya who continues his visit to the most popular nation today, had the occasion yesterday to state his mind and the mind of the Cameroonian people on the long standing relations between his country and China.
While congratulating once more Xi Jinping for his reelection as President of China and thanking him for the warm welcome reserved for him and his spouse, President Biya, reechoed the fact that relations between the two countries have resisted the test of time stating inter alia that China has become one of Cameroon's strategic development partners.
Without necessarily exhausting the list of projects won and executed by Chinese companies in Cameroon, President Biya pointed this out as living testimony of the trust Cameroon has for China. In this light, he underscored the need for the two nations to deepen their cooperation and ensure the promotion of private sector cooperation between the two countries.
The satisfaction of receiving a friend was evident on the face of President Xi Jinping when he proudly pointed out that President Biya was the first President to come to China after his reelection. "You are a great friend of China and I acknowledge that", Xi Jinping said, stating that Cameroon for China remains a great partner in Africa. He expressed his wish to see the two countries continue to work together for the benefit of their people.
The two leaders in all, expressed their willingness to deepen cultural cooperation between the two countries, collaborate in ensuring regional security and observe as they have always done the principle of equitable development.
The day which ended with a State dinner offered by the Chinese leader was preceded by the signing of five agreements in the range of economic cooperation and infrastructure development.
The stay continues today with a visit of the exhibition centre for bamboo treatment, Huawei exhibition centre and two important meetings, one with the Chinese Congress President and the other with the country's Premier among others.