Okwe Obi, Abuja
Ahead of the China-Africa Cooperation (FOCOC) summit slated for September, in Beijing, the Federal Government, on Monday, indicated interest to lobby China for the co-chairmanship seat.
This was the outcome of the resolution held by the Ministry of Budget and National Planningm in Abuja.
Although, representatives of various ministries, departments and agencies pushed to hold two more meetings due to the poor turn out of representatives of other ministries and agencies for other areas of importance that could be presented at the summit.
FOCAC is an initiative of China and African countries with the purposes of strengthening friendly coorporation, equal consultation, enhancing mutual understanding and expanding consensus.
Speaking further, Permanent Secretary of the ministry, Budget and National Planning, Mr Olajide Odewale, said Nigeria becoming the co-chair would help push for better bileteral agreements for the country.
Represented by the Director, Internation Corporation, Elizabeth Eghareda, Odewale highlighted some of the approved projects of the 6th summit.
Which are” Nigeria railway modernization projects, Lagos-Kano phase; Nigeria railway modernization project, Lagos-Kano, costal railway project Calabar-Lagos, Mambilla 3, 050MW Hydroelectric power and Niger Delta East-West road.”
China’s Minister Counselor, Mr. Lin Jing, said Nigeria was a pacesetter of the corporation, adding that through the joint efforts, mutual trust has been enhanced, economic ties forged closer.
Jing, also said despite looming trade wars among major economics by imposing tariffs on steel and aluminum launched by some countries, China has taken steps to lower import tarrif on common drugs, including cancer drugs starting from May 1.
He added that “Africa’s and China’s dream of development are highly compatible, and China is willing to share its approach with African countries.”