On July 29th, 2019, H. E. Tan Jian, Chinese Ambassador to Ethiopia, joined by H.E. Amb. Mahlet Hailu, Permanent Secretary of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Ethiopia, planted seedlings at the Chinese embassy compound, to respond with action the calls for the National Green Development Program.
Amb. Tan in his remarks, stressed that China supports the Ethiopian Government and Prime Minister Dr. Abiy Ahmed’s “Green Legacy” initiative, and proud to be part of the plan to set a world record through planting 200 million seedlings in 12 hours. “We are eager to contribute to the realization of this goal.” He said, the embassy has also encouraged Chinese companies and other entities to actively participate in this great initiative. China has always been a staunch supporter of Ethiopia’s efforts to improve its natural and urban environment, including the Sheger riverbank project, in a bid to help creating a more ecological-and-business-friendly environment for its sustainable development endeavors.
Amb. Tan said that Ethiopia’s National Green Development Program collaborates with China’s Belt and Road Initiative, which also highlights green development. Chinese President Xi Jinping underlined that China must pursue a model of sustainable development featuring increased production, higher living standards and healthy ecosystems, reiterating “lucid waters and lush mountains are invaluable assets”. In the FOCAC (Forum on China-Africa Cooperation) Beijing Summit in 2018, President Xi also launched a green development initiative, which will undertake 50 projects for green development and ecological and environmental protection in Africa. China will continue to support Ethiopia and together promote green development, strengthen eco-environment protection, and jointly build a green belt and road.
“As the ambassador here, together with my staff, we will do our level best to broaden and deepen our cooperation with Ethiopia. So this event is a token of our efforts, our readiness and our willingness to work closely with our Ethiopian friends. We will plant more trees in our mission. I sincerely hope and believe that this great country will become more beautiful.” he added.
H.E. Amb. Mahlet on her part, briefed the Ambassador on the national green development campaign, expressed her appreciation on the active participation of the Chinese side for answering the call of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs in joining the call of H.E. Prime Minister Dr. Abiy Ahmed, which is “attempting to curb the country’s deforestation and to protect the environment”. She said, “Trees are our life, trees are oxygen, and trees are our family.”
H.E. Amb. Mahlet also applauded China’s support on the Sheger project. She said, “I would also like to express our deepest appreciation to the Chinese government for being part and parcel of the Beautifying the Sheger project which will definitely help our capital Addis Ababa. The project will help protect its environment and make it much greener. Ethiopia and China have joined in various initiatives, and we have also aligned our policies on various issues. We will continue to do so in our sincere commitment to work together to deepen this strategic partnership.”
The Chinese embassy is planning to plant more than 100 seedlings (including 6 olive trees and 110 Pine trees) at its compound.