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Experts Gear up for African Aid Mission

One hundred Chinese experts and young volunteers will leave for Africa by the end of the year to deliver China's promise of further help in the fields of agriculture, education and healthcare.

Senior officials including Vice Premier Wu Yi and several central government ministers chaired a departure ceremony on Friday for the team, which includes 58 senior experts on agricultural technology, 16 malaria experts and 26 young volunteers who will work as teachers.

They will be based in different countries including Tunisia, Tanzania, Ethiopia and Sudan.

Foreign Minister Yang Jiechi said in a speech at the ceremony: "Sending agricultural and malaria experts and young volunteers to Africa is an important follow-up step of the China-Africa Summit and testimony to China's sincere wish to help African countries."

Tang Yong, a physical education teacher from Guizhou Province who will stay in Tunisia for one year, said he felt extremely proud to be part of the mission.

"We will try to adapt to local conditions as soon as possible and use our skills to contribute to the development of Africa," he said.

"The African continent is a remote but attractive place to me," he said.

The team will leave in groups starting this month. All of them are expected to start their work and operations by the turn of the year.

(China Daily November 17, 2007)

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