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Ruto shares platform with President Putin, Xi of China

In a historic meeting, President William Ruto finally shared a platform with some of the world’s most powerful leaders during his visit to China.

The gathering took place during a State Banquet hosted by President Xi Jinping of China for visiting Heads of State and Government in Beijing.

This remarkable event marked the first face-to-face meeting between President Ruto and President Xi since the Kenya Kwanza administration assumed power.

Among the distinguished guests in attendance was President Vladimir Putin of Russia, accompanied by Ethiopian Prime Minister Abiy Ahmed, among other global leaders.

The long-anticipated meeting between President Ruto and President Xi generated mixed reactions on social media, with some Kenyans questioning why it took so long for the two leaders to convene.

During their encounter, President Ruto emphasised the deep-rooted collaboration between Kenya and China over the last four decades. He pledged to strengthen this partnership, acknowledging China as a valued partner in Kenya’s development journey.

“China is a valued partner in Kenya’s development journey. We shall stay the course of partnership, collaboration, and cooperation for the mutual advancement of both nations and our citizens,” President Ruto expressed.

Before the State Banquet, President Ruto witnessed the signing of a Memorandum of Understanding between Kenya and China’s Energy International Group. This memorandum aims to enhance the flexibility and reliability of electrical power systems, modernise power generation, transmission lines, distribution lines, and substations.

The Kenyan President also observed the signing of a Memorandum of Understanding between Kenya and Huawei, a leading Chinese technology corporation. This agreement is set to accelerate Kenya’s digital transformation.

“Our partnership with Huawei will advance our ICT infrastructure and drive digitisation across key sectors like transportation, e-government, education, and health,” President Ruto affirmed.

President Ruto enthusiastically welcomed China’s support for Kenya’s Bottom-Up Economic Transformation Agenda. He commended the keen interest shown by Chinese companies in various crucial projects, spanning ICT, energy, housing, road development, and air transport.

Furthermore, President Ruto engaged in discussions with a senior member of China’s Communist Party Political Bureau, Mr. Li Xi. During their talks, they reached an agreement to create a conducive environment for Chinese companies participating in essential projects, including road construction, railway expansion, and airport modernisation.

This momentous meeting marks a significant step in strengthening Kenya’s ties with China and fostering international collaboration for the mutual benefit of both nations and their citizens.