The People’s Republic of China has promised to deepen cooperation with Nigeria to overcome major challenges of the country and to enhance development especially in the face of COVID-19.
Chinese Ambassador to Nigeria, Cui Jianchun gave the promise in Abuja on Thursday, 27 January, 2022 during the commemoration of the 2022 Chinese New Year celebration tagged “The year of the Tiger”.
Cui said that as China marks its new year, and also in the face of the COVID-19 pandemic going down, it is a great opportunity to assist African countries, especially Nigeria in new areas.
He said: “The year of Tiger is really very important for China I do believe that in the year 2022, after the COVID pandemic we will embark on new cooperation.
“I just laid out that we have five strategic goals and also we have five prioritized areas within infrastructure, ICT, industry, investments, imports, exports.
“So I do believe that in the year 2022, China is working hard on building our second goal and during this process, it is very important for two countries to work together.”
He added that: “For Nigeria it is also very important and it is good for both countries to try to utilize the atmosphere of Tiger year.
“That means we will have ambition, we will have bravery, we will have strength, not only defeating the difficulties of the COVID-19 but will embark on deeper, broadened cooperation.”
Cui said that during the last Forum on China-Africa Cooperation (FOCAC) in November 2021 in Senegal, Presidnet Xi Jinping pledged to scale up Chinese interventions in Africa in nine major sectors.
“President laid out the initiatives between China and Africa the most important thing that we have nine programs.
He noted that: “The first is about health, the second is poverty alleviation, the third is trade promotion, the fourth is about investment, the fifth is about green development, the sixth is about economy, seventh agriculture.
“The eight is about people-to-people communication the ninth is about security. And of paramount importance is that we have to focus of security.”
He said: “I want to share with you that the Chinese law enforcement is working with the Nigeria side, but how can we create a favorable condition to attract investment, this is of paramount importance.”
Cui however said as the 14th Chinese Ambassador to Nigeria, he is working vigorously to ensure implementations in the above listed areas of priorities.
Dr Ifeoma Anyanwutaku, Permanent Secretary, Federal Ministry of Information and Culture while congratulating the government and people of China on the event of their New Year’s celebration, said:
“Based on the great diplomatic ties between Nigeria and China in the past 50 years, Nigeria has witnessed renewed impetus for cultural understanding between both countries.
She said: “Significant days such as the Chinese New Year celebration which is also known as the Lunar New Year therefore remains very important to the Federal Republic of Nigeria.
“I wish to reiterate the commitments of the Federal Republic of Nigeria to forge better cultural relations with the People’s Republic of China.”