By Nneka Nwogwugwu, Abuja
The People’s Republic of China has signed a Memorandum of Understanding with Nigeria for the purpose of setting up an inter-governmental committee charged to coordinate cooperation between the two countries.
The Chinese government also donated 6 billion naira to Nigeria on Tuesday, January 5, during a meeting with Nigeria’s Foreign Affairs Minister, Geoffrey Onyeama, Minister of Transportation, Rotimi Amaechi, Minister of Aviation, Sirika Hadi, Minister of Trade and Investment, Niyi Adebayo, and the Minister of State for Health, Senator Olorunnimbe Mamora.
Others present at the meeting include, Nigeria’s Ambassador to China, Baba Ahmed Jidda, the Executive Director, Nigeria Export Promotion Council (NEPC), Olusegun Awolowo and Director of Nigerian Investment Promotion Council (NIPC), Yewande Sadiku.
The Chinese Foreign Affairs Minister, Wang Yi, who was on a two day visit to Nigeria said that the committee will foster cooperation between the two countries in areas such as health, road construction, industrialization and greater capacity for self-development.
He also added that the Chinese government will boost military and security cooperation as well as coordinate regional and international affairs of both countries.
Yi said that the joint affairs on strategic cooperation will add to Africa’s development for peace and sustainability of the world.
Earlier speaking, Onyeama said that the inter-governmental committee will institute a mechanism that will coordinate defence, railway, and political sectors of Nigeria.
He also said that the MoU signed will help analyse global affairs support in multinational organization.
Onyeama noted that Nigeria and China will be celebrating 50 years of diplomatic relations in 2021, adding that China has supported West Africa in trade relations , COVID -19 vaccine support and education.
Nigeria’s foreign minister also disclosed that the two countries are planning to get an airline that will have direct flights to China.
Among the functions of the committee as stated on the MoU include; planning the priority areas, key projects and modes of bilateral cooperation in the light of such cooperation and coordinating bilateral cooperation in political, economy and trade, cultural and exchange of personnel , agriculture, security and other fields.