ABUJA (Budget and National Planning Report)- The Federal Government has disclosed that Nigeria’s delegation will be leaving for Beijing in China, on Monday July 25, 2016 for the Coordinators’ meeting on the implementation of the follow-up actions of the Johannesburg Summit of the Forum on China Africa Cooperation (FOCAC).
According to a statement released to the press by Federal Ministry of Budget and National Planning, on Sunday July 24, 2016, the Johannesburg Summit which was held in December 2015 identified 10 critical areas of cooperation between China and African countries, including Nigeria.
Adding, President Muhammadu Buhari’s visit in April 2016 bolstered Nigeria’s participation in the 10 critical areas which covers industrialization, Agricultural Mechanization, Infrastructure Development, Financial Cooperation, Green Development, Trade and Investment Facilitation, Poverty Reduction, Public Health, Cultural and People-to-people Exchange and Peace and Security.
“Nigeria has recently developed a short-list of projects which the delegation to China, led by the Minister of Budget and National Planning, Udoma Udo Udoma (Senator) , will be discussing at the FOCAC coordination meeting in Beijing during the week,” the statement said.
It also revealed that the Chinese government had pledged a $60 billion assistance to African countries to develop and grow their infrastructural and human development capacities. “$35 billion is set aside for concessionary loans, $10 billion for the China Africa Fund for Production capacity while $5 billion each is earmarked as no-interest grants; China Africa Development Fund; and special loan for the development of Small and Medium-scale Enterprises (SMEs)”.
The Ministry’s press statement further disclosed that the delegation is expected to fine-tune and strengthen the bond of relationship between the two countries by ensuring the faithful implementation of the bi-lateral agreements signed during President Buhari’s visit to China early this year.
The Minister for Budget and National Planning, Udoma Udo Udoma, also said that the successful implementation of Nigeria’s identified projects under FOCAC is expected to further enhance the relationship.