Bringing people closer
The winners of the Second CHINAFRICA Short Video Competition were announced on December 8 at award ceremonies held simultaneously in Beijing, Cape Town and Dakar. A short video based on the life and work of an African football coach in China won the grand prize.
"Through the video, I hope to present a real story of people-to-people exchange between China and Africa," said Xu Wei, one of the creators of the video. The short video recounts how Pategou Kamgang Francis, a football coach from Cameroon, trains youth in China.
Launched in August 2020, the competition is hosted by BEIJING REVIEW under China International Publishing Group (CIPG). It also gets support from the Chinese-African People's Friendship Association. This year, the competition was held in three zones - China, Senegal and South Africa.
Themed Working Hand in Hand for a Shared Future, the competition aims to promote China-Africa friendship and enhance people-to-people understanding. Compared with last year, this year's competition has higher specifications, larger scale and more participants and entries. The works were received from 28 countries in the three zones. After preliminary review, online voting and expert evaluation, 19 entries were chosen as winners.
Among the entries, some show how people in China and African countries supported each other during the COVID-19 pandemic; some tell stories of African student volunteers standing together with Chinese friends to fight the virus; and some talk about how Chinese companies helped local residents in Africa prevent and control the epidemic.
Gao Anming, Vice President and Editor in Chief of CIPG, said in his speech that in the new era, China-Africa friendship, especially people-to-people exchanges, needs to be further enhanced. It is timely and important to hold this short video competition and encourage the use of this popular form of media to tell stories about China and African countries and about Chinese and African people.
Gao said the competition could effectively enhance the understanding between the people of China and Africa and the China-Africa friendship. It could also be part of the force pushing forward the development of the Belt and Road Initiative and the building of an even closer China-Africa community with a shared future.
"As I know, most of the videos tell touching stories about China-Africa joint efforts to fight against the pandemic and praise our traditional friendship between China and Africa," said Zhou Yong, Cultural Counsellor of the Chinese Embassy to South Africa. He said these vivid and moving video stories have become a positive force helping people overcome the difficulties during the pandemic. "They also remind us of the importance of healing power of cultural exchange and people-to-people contacts in this time of hardship."
This short video competition about China-Africa cooperation shows that audiovisual productions are a powerful vector of transmission, popularization of values and rapprochement between peoples through the magic of technologies of information and communication, said Abdoulaye DIOP, Minister of Culture and Communication of Senegal. "It is precisely through the discovery of other cultures that we become more flexible toward others and that we can understand each other better," he added.
Zhang Yanqiu, Director of the Africa Communication Research Center at the Communication University of China and also one of the judges of the competition, told ChinAfrica that the competition is a way to connect youth in China and Africa. "This year, I found that many contestants or protagonists of the videos are young people. Young people have played an important role in promoting China-Africa friendly relations. They bring to China African culture, and bring back the goodwill of the Chinese people."