The All Progressives Congress, APC, on Wednesday signalled its intention to enter into partnership and cooperation with the Communist Party of China, CPC, the founding and ruling political party of the People’s Republic of China.
This was a fallout of a meeting held between the APC’s national secretary, Mai Mala Buni, and a Chinese government delegation led by the chargé d’affaires of the Chinese Embassy in Nigeria, Qin Jian. The meeting was held at the APC National Secretariat in Abuja.
At the meeting, the Chinese chargé d’affaires, Mr. Jian, disclosed to the APC leadership that the Chinese President, Xi Jinping, has invited President Muhammadu Buhari to China on a state visit on a yet-to-be-announced date.
Mr. Buni who was represented at the meeting by APC’s Director of Organisation, Kyari Abubakar, said: “China is a very important technical and trading partner to Nigeria. Both countries have enjoyed excellent social, economic and cultural relations. As China is aware, Nigeria recently witnessed a change of government which ushered in the administration of President Muhammadu Buhari. The time for better cooperation between both countries is now as the APC and the President Buhari administration works to deliver on its Change mandate.”
He said healthy relations between Nigeria and China would ultimately be of benefit to Africa.
At party level, the APC National Secretary identified capacity building and collaboration as areas Nigeria’s APC and the Chinese CPC can partner.
Meanwhile, Qin Jian reported that following the successful December 2015 Forum on China-Africa Co-operation (FOCAC) summit which brought together Chinese senior government officials and most African heads of government to Johannesburg, South Africa, the Chinese President Xi Jinping has announced a $60 billion aid package for Africa.
The aid package would finance a broad range of assistance programmes to help Africa industrialise, modernise its agricultural production, boost the skills of its workers, build infrastructure and improve its health care.
Qin Jian said 2016 marks the 45th anniversary of diplomatic relations between Nigeria and China.
“We (China) have enjoyed positive and beneficial partnership with Nigeria in healthcare, economy, infrastructure development, social/cultural exchange and other areas… Nigeria has the biggest economy in Africa and is a very important partner with China.
“The Chinese CPC and Nigeria’s ruling APC will pursue better cooperation which will be of benefit to both nations. Both parties can share experiences on how to develop the economy and protect the environment as well as technical support and capacity building where necessary,” Qin Jian said.