Juliet Akoje in Abuja
The Deputy Speaker of the House of Representatives, Hon. Benjamin Okezie Kalu, has hailed China’s diplomatic and trade relationships with Nigeria, saying that the cultural exchanges between them have fostered a deep understanding and appreciation of each other’s heritage.
In a statement issued yesterday by his Chief press Secretary, Mr. Levinus Nwabughiogu, Kalu while delivering his goodwill message at the China’s 74th National Day celebrations in Abuja said that the ties between both countries has fast-tracked the industrial development of Nigeria with projects such as the Abuja-Kaduna Railway and the Zungeru Hydroelectric Power Project standing as a testament to the enduring collaboration.
The Deputy Speaker further remarked that Chinese products have become a staple in Nigerian households and that Nigeria’s agricultural exports to China have continued to grow.
Kalu said that the symbiotic relationship has created jobs, boosted local industries, and increased the welfare of the people, adding that currently, Nigeria is China’s second largest trading partner in Africa.
“The decades-long relationship between our two great nations, Nigeria and China has been mutually beneficial, particularly in recent times. The rich tapestry of our partnership has woven threads of cooperation in various sectors, from infrastructure development to trade, technology exchange, and cultural engagement. China’s significant investments in Nigeria have contributed immensely to the growth and development of our nation, fostering economic prosperity and stability.
“China has been a steadfast partner in Nigeria’s infrastructural development, with projects such as the Abuja-Kaduna Railway and the Zungeru Hydroelectric Power Project standing as a testament to our enduring collaboration. These initiatives have not only improved connectivity within Nigeria but have also laid the foundation for sustainable economic growth.
In the realm of commerce, our bilateral trade has flourished, opening up new opportunities for both nations.”
He however urged the government of the People’s Republic of China to join Nigeria in her efforts to identify and resolve the tendencies that encourage xenophobic attacks at the world stage.
“I look forward to both countries taking increasing steps to engender people to people diplomacy in order to troubleshoot matters that encourage xenophobic tendencies,” Kalu stressed.