Drawing on expertise and strengths amongst African and Chinese scientists
History was made on September 2, 2019 at the African Academy of Sciences (AAS) headquarters in Nairobi, when the President of the Academy Prof Felix Dapare Dakora and Prof Chunli Bali, President of the Chinese Academy Of Sciences (CAS) signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) to draw upon the strengths and expertise of their scientists to undertake joint strategic studies and policy advice in areas of shared interest, which will assist their respective Academies in promoting social and economic development while addressing global challenges and the UN SDGs.
The MOU which will see the AAS become a member of the Alliance International Science Organizations (ANSO), a body which CAS is a founder member, will create a collaboration that fosters objectives of both organizations in promoting Science Technology and Innovation (STI) for the development and economic benefit of the people of Africa and China.
“As the President of the AAS, I am grateful to note that CAS is committed to AAS becoming a Member of ANSO with full privileges in joint projects and capacity building. I am also grateful to you and CAS for your commitment to ensure that during the Africa-China Biannual Summits, African and Chinese scientists will have the opportunity to participate in the Summit and dialogue on STI matters of mutual importance to Africa and China.” echoed Prof Dakora.
In his speech Prof Chunli said, “CAS highly values its relationship with Africa. Our academy wishes to work closer with AAS. Over the past 5 years, Sino-Africa Joint Research Center (SAJOREC) has served as an outreach of CAS in Africa to develop substantial collaboration partnerships and projects with around 20 academic institutions in Africa. The cooperation is focused on areas of great importance to the sustainable development of Africa, including food and water security, eco-environmental protection, public health, desertification prevention and control, and biodiversity and wildlife conservation.
The MOU further provides for a financial aid to build the Sino Africa Young Scientists Centre at the AAS campus in Nairobi, Kenya, which will promote scientific research and collaboration. The building will complement SAJOREC in undertaking scientific joint activities.
The ceremony was officiated by members of the AAS governing council: Prof Bathelemy Nyasse, AAS Secretary General; Prof Vincent PK Titanji, AAS Vice president of Central Africa Region; Prof Elly Sabiiti, Vice President Eastern Africa region and AAS Executive Director Prof Nelson Torto. The delegation concluded the visit with a tour of the AAS grounds where the AAS future Campus will be built.