The China Africa Business Council (CABC) and Lagos Chamber of Commerce and Industry (LCCI) have brokered a partnership aimed at improving bilateral and diplomatic relations between People’s Republic of China and Nigeria.
The Chairman, China Africa Business Council (CABC), Chief Diana Chen, at a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) signing on Wednesday in Lagos, said China planned to invest $300 billion in Africa in the next three years.
Meanwhile bilateral relations between both nations have expanded with Nigeria positioned as one of China’s largest trading partners in Africa.
Chen, noting Nigeria’s high import dependence, stressed the need for more exports to achieve a balanced trade level.
She said that China’s investments would be in areas of logistics, supply chain and product manufacturing in Nigeria.
“We are targeting the next three years between China and Africa to increase the trade volume from over $30 billion to $300 billion.
“This is over ten times the size of the current trade between China and Africa and the trade increase is expected to benefit more African businesses.
“We are also increasing investments to develop and promote the Nigerian culture for exports to Asian countries, because Nigeria’s creative industry is one of the biggest industries in the world and it offers huge potentials for Nigeria,” she said.
Chen also revealed plans to establish 10 medical, 10 poverty reduction initiatives, 10 agricultural projects and 10 housing projects for African countries.
She reaffirmed China’s commitment to helping Nigeria address its security concerns by providing military support programmes.
Dr Michael Olawale-Cole, President, LCCI, noted that the partnership would further improve bilateral and diplomatic relations between both countries and strengthen the LCCI’s international trade relations with China.
He noted that as at May 2019, Chinese investment in Nigeria was above $20 billion, given Nigeria’s status as a competitive destination for the establishment of small and medium-sized firms.
Olawale-Cole stated that the MoU would unlock investment opportunities for both economies via the exploration of the vast potential in both countries.
“China-Nigeria relations, which dates to the early 1970s, has progressed significantly in recent years with Nigeria being one of China’s largest trading partners in Africa.
“Over the years, China has been a strategic import hub for Nigerian manufacturers and trade activities between both nations have seen dramatic improvement.
“The Chinese have shown interest in the Nigerian market, with presence across various sectors of the economy, including financial, technology, construction, retail and e-commerce and manufacturing.
“According to the China Chamber of Commerce in Nigeria, about 200, 000 Nigerians are employed by over 150 Chinese companies based in Nigeria.
“Even till date, China remains a major financier of several developmental projects in Nigeria.
“The Lagos Chamber of Commerce and Industry is pleased to work with the China Africa Business Council (CABC) towards the actualisation of these objectives for the betterment of our economies,” he said.