Zhang Zhisheng, the Consul General of the People’s Republic of China to Zanzibar, the United Republic of Tanzania started his diplomatic career in Zanzibar in November 2020.
Being the Consul General in Zanzibar, Zhang has been working hard with his Chinese colleagues and Zanzibar counterparts to promote Sino-Zanzibar and Sino-Tanzanian relations in various fields.
Interaction with overseas Chinese and efforts in public diplomacy
The Chinese medical team to Zanzibar is the second medical team sent by China after its foundation in 1947. Thus, Chinese medical aid to Zanzibar has a glorious history of nearly 60 years.
In this case, Zhang visited the medical team on December 6, 2021, and expressed his support and regard to the team. Simultaneously, he praised the team’s continued contribution to Zanzibar and Sino-Tanzanian relations.
Moreover, the overseas Chinese are an important resource to help China and Tanzania establish positive public relations. Shortly after taking office, on December 17, 2020, Zhang visited overseas Chinese families in Zanzibar.
He extended warm greetings and concern about their living and working situation under the context of the epidemic. Also, Zhang expressed his great hope for the Chinese in Zanzibar to promote people-to-people exchanges and share Chinese traditional culture.
Contributing to the bilateral relations through local media
Consul General Zhang does not only visit Chinese stakeholders in Zanzibar but also interacts with local media to promote mutual trust. Earlier in 2021, Zhang posted an article on the only English newspaper in Zanzibar, the Zanzibar Mail.
Zhang Zhisheng reviewed the friendly relations between China and Zanzibar in his article and elaborated on China’s diplomatic policy towards Africa. Furthermore, on April 7, 2022, Zhang attended the 50th anniversary of Kalume Day in Tanzania.
To express the Chinese people’s commemoration of Kalume, he published an article titled “Kalum — Founder of Zanzibar and Friend of China” on the Swahili website of China Radio International and Zanzibar Today, the official daily newspaper of Zanzibar.
Miaka 50 ya Karume Day
His Excerllency late Sheikh Abeid Amani Karume, the first President of Zanzibar, the first Vice President of Tanzania, a sincere friend of the Chinese people, we will forever remember him and his great contributions to the everlasting friendship. pic.twitter.com/PV6Wbp67s4
— Zhang Zhisheng 张志昇 (@salahzhang) April 6, 2022
Promoting public welfare activities
On April 22, 2022, Zhang Zhisheng made a courtesy call on Riziki Pembe Juma, the Minister of Social Welfare, Older People, Gender, and Children. This ministry is newly established by the Zanzibar government.
Zhang expressed that the Chinese Consulate General would like to maintain working communication and develop cooperation with the new ministry.
Also, Consul General Zhang said that the people of Zanzibar and China are closely connected. As he introduced, several private enterprises and children welfare organizations in Jiangsu province launched a charity campaign.
The project aimed to provide medical gloves for Zanzibar. This is a typical case for China-Zanzibar civil cooperation. Minister Juma spoke highly of this action and stressed that she will work closely with Chinese partners to develop China-Zanzibar relations as usual.
Work on China-Zanzibar investment and cooperation opportunities
In April this year, Consul General Zhang Zhisheng in Zanzibar met with the Permanent Secretary of the Ministry of Blue Economy and Fisheries of the Revolutionary Government of Zanzibar, and the Permanent Secretary of the Ministry of Water Resources, Energy and Mining.
Besides, Zhang also had a meeting with Mohammed Haji, the Executive Vice President of Zanzibar Public University. During a series of meetings, he exchanged views with Zanzibar senior officers.
Both sides discussed cooperation in economic and trade investment, Chinese language teaching, and later maintenance of facilities assisted by the Chinese government. Zhang reached many consensuses with Zanzibar senior officers.
Besides, Zhang also participated in the High-level Investment conference on water resources hosted by Zanzibar. In addition, he has maintained close communication with the Zanzibar Chamber of Commerce.
In conclusion, Zhang Zhisheng, the Chinese Consul General to Zanzibar has contributed a lot to Sino-Zanzibar relations and China-Tanzanian relations. He is an outstanding Chinese diplomat who has made progress in China-Zanzibar cooperation in various fields.