China-Africa media forum held in Kenya amid call for enhanced cooperation

NAIROBI, Nov. 17 (Xinhua) — China-Africa media cooperation summit was held on Tuesday in Nairobi amid calls for robust exchanges to realize the benefits of the Fourth Industrial Revolution.

Senior government officials, representatives from media organizations and academies of China and African countries participated in the one-day forum co-hosted by the Chinese embassy in Kenya and the Media Council of Kenya, under the theme China-Africa media cooperation in a digital era.

“The Fourth Industrial Revolution, characterized by the digital technologies among others, has ushered in a new era for both China and Africa,” said Zhou Pingjian, Chinese Ambassador to Kenya.

“We hope that the media could play an even more significant role in fostering an enabling environment for African industrialization and China-Africa cooperation,” he added.

Maureen Mbaka, chief administrative secretary, Ministry of Information, Communication Technology (ICT) said that Kenya is committed to robust cooperation with China in the media sector in line with its foreign policy.

“The opportunity to strengthen cooperation in the media sector and enhance China-Africa cooperation ties perfectly well in our foreign relations policy and thinking,” said Mbaka.

She said the China-Africa media cooperation forum provided an opportunity to share knowledge and best practices that can promote journalistic practices alongside the creation of digital content that is able to transform livelihoods.

“It is our hope that we will forge partnerships that will strengthen ongoing initiatives to digitally grow our media in a mutually beneficial way,” said Mbaka.

Tian Yuhong, executive secretary, All China Journalists Association said that enhanced interactions and professional exchanges between Chinese and African media entities are key to strengthen bonds of friendship.

“The Chinese and African press should strengthen exchanges and dialogues, and share China-Africa cooperation and common development from a more comprehensive, balanced and objective perspective, so as to continuously enhance people-to-people connectivity and friendship between China and Africa,” said Tian.

He said that Chinese and African media should foster exchanges aimed at promoting convergence in a digital era alongside countering misleading narratives from western media on the COVID-19 pandemic.

Maina Muiruri, chairman of the Media Council of Kenya said the high-level China-Africa media cooperation forum was expected to chart a new beginning in exchange of expertise required to enhance the resilience of the media industry amid disruptions linked to the pandemic.

“The forum comes at no better time, as it provides the opportunity to look at how the media is remodeling its viability plans in the face of challenges in revenue streams, the safety of staff and coping in the COVID-19 era,” said Muiruri. 

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