China-Cote d'Ivoire cooperation brings people together
2018-09-04 16:22:00

Aubierge Koffi of Cote d'Ivoire is a graduate student majoring in business management at the Business School of Nanjing Normal University. The student who came to Jiangsu in 2015 shared her views on the exchanges between China and the West African country as well as the development of Jiangsu province.

Tangible benefits from China-Africa cooperation

Koffi said her father was a little worried when she decided to study in Jiangsu after being awarded the Chinese Government Scholarship three years ago.

After listening to Koffi's stories about China from time to time, however, the family now feels more attached to this oriental country far from home.

"Just like my family, many ordinary people in Cote d'Ivoire are now becoming more familiar with the country," Koffi said.

After China launched the “Belt and Road” initiative in 2013, exchanges between the two countries have been further improved.

In November 2017, Cote d'Ivoire inaugurated the Soubre hydro electric power station, the largest of its kind in the West African country and built by Chinese company Sinohydro Corporation Limited, effectively alleviating the local power shortage.

With China’s support, the Abidjan Port expansion project is expected to be completed in July 2019, which will make the port the largest in West Africa.

The Chinese-funded Abidjan Olympic Stadium - the biggest and most modern sports stadium in the African continent - is set to complete construction in October 2019 and will be used in time for the country's hosting of the 2021 Africa Cup of Nations.

From shy to cheerful

People in Cote d'Ivoire are generally known for their outward expression of enthusiasm, but Koffi said she was very shy. “The school dormitory manager has taken care of me a lot. I also met many new friends from all over the world. I think this is also one of the benefits of my study in Jiangsu.”

Data from Jiangsu Education Department shows that the province's colleges and universities received 39,900 foreign students in 2017, ranking third in the country. Not only does the number of international students increased by 10 percent year-on-year, cross-cultural communication service has been enhanced constantly.

Design ideas from the oriental charm

With a clear picture of her future in mind, Koffi said: “I like home design. After graduation, I plan to open my own design company in Cote d'Ivoire.”

Koffi explained that in recent years, more and more Chinese people have visited or invested in Cote d'Ivoire, bringing capital and management experience to her country. Meanwhile, they have also been attracted by the rich and diverse culture of West Africa, and this implies business opportunities, said Koffi.

Koffi’s dream is to combine the exquisiteness and agility in the culture of Jiangnan, areas immediately to the south of the lower reaches of the Yangtze River, with the distinctive colors and bold lines of traditional Cote d'Ivoire accessories, making a fusion of the cultural charms of both countries.

Contact us at Editor:Amanda

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