ABUJA – Vice President Namadi Sambo on Friday says the established Nigeria-China Joint Commission is to be upgraded into a Bi-national level to enhance greater economic ties with China.
Sambo stated this during an audience with a Chinese delegation led by the Vice Minister of Foreign Affairs of the Republic of China, Zhang Ming, at the State House, Abuja.
The delegation is in Nigeria to lay the groundwork for the forth coming visit of the Chinese Premier, Li Keqiang, to Nigeria and to consolidate the existing ties between the two countries.
While welcoming the delegation, Sambo noted that Nigeria and the Republic of China established a long standing relationship far back as 1971.
“Nigeria currently stands as the third place trading partner with China in Africa and is aspiring to be the number one trading partner.’’
He appreciated ongoing relationship with the Chinese company collaborating in partnership with the Defence Industry Corporation of Nigeria (DICON) in the installation of new ammunition protection lines, mass production of military hardware and other armored personnel carriers and clothing.
He said that the Nigerian government was in support the reform programme of the Chinese Prime Minister.
“Nigeria fully associates itself with the attainment of the goal of the Beijing Declaration, an action plan for the 2013-2015 programme as it solicits for more intervention of Chinese government through focus towards Africa’s development in the interests of our two countries and humanity in general,’’ he added.
Sambo called for further support and cooperation of the Chinese authority, and urged Nigeria’s Minister of Foreign Affairs and China’s Ambassador to Nigeria to meet and seek ways to improve on the visa relationship.
He said that Nigeria looks forward to the forthcoming visit of the premier and his wife.
Earlier, the Chinese vice minister, had informed vice president that the Chinese premier would be attending the forthcoming African Summit of the World Economic Forum in Nigeria.
According to him, during the premier’s visit, which coincides with the African Summit of the World Economic Forum in Nigeria, China has plans to buttress further its existing cooperation with Nigeria and improve on China’s existing investments in Nigeria.
Present at the meeting were the China’s Ambassador to Nigeria, Gu Xzaozee; Nigeria’s Minister of Foreign Affairs, Aminu Wali; Permanent Secretary, Ministry of Power, Godknows Igali; and others. (NAN)