Gambia and China’s Parliament agreed on Monday to strengthen cooperation and exchanges between the two legislative bodies, as the Asian nation seeks to put a foothold in the West African nation.
Gambia’s House Speaker Mariam Jack Denton met with Chinese Congress leader Zhang Dejiang in Beijing.
Gambia resumed diplomatic relations with China last year and last week, Beijing commissioned the building of a $50 million conference center in Banjul.
Gambia is seeking to further economic and trade cooperation with China and with Monday’s new agreement, it will also see people-to-people exchanges as well.
The two parliaments will now work on legal protection and policy support for pragmatic cooperation on agriculture, fishery, infrastructure, and tourism, key priorities for Banjul.
China has committed itself to supporting the Gambia’s new government’s efforts “to improve its people’s wellbeing and realize sustainable development.”
The new relations between the Gambia’s National Assembly and China’s National People’s Congress is the newest bilateral tie to be signed between the two countries.
Gambia’s Speaker Denton said the experience-sharing in state governance, legislation, and oversight will be significant in strengthening the pillars of democracy in her country.
Although The Gambia has returned to a foreign policy of non-alignment, China is seeking to have the Gambia’s support on several international matters, including the South China Sea dispute.