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FOCAC summit: Nigeria-China relations to explore new opportunities—Envoy

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The Chinese Government has said that the forthcoming Forum on China Africa Cooperation (FOCAC) Summit would bring new opportunities to strengthen ties between Nigeria and China.

The summit will hold from Sept. 3 to Sept. 4 in Beijing.

Fielding questions from newsmen in Abuja on Friday, Chinese Ambassador to Nigeria, Zhou Pingjian said that the Nigerian Government had long confirmed its participation in the summit.

Zhou said that the Nigerian delegation, drawn from various sectors, showed the commitment of the government to the relationship shared by both countries.

“After the summit, on Sept. 5, there is going to be very important bilateral meetings; the Chinese President and the Chinese Premier will meet with President Buhari on separate occasions.

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“President Buhari attended the last event in Johannesburg in 2015 and he was the first African Head of State who visited China after the summit.

“Our two sides reached an important consensus at the highest levels and since then, China and Nigeria cooperation has entered a new phase of rapid development.

“From experience and based on what we have done and looking to the summit, I believe the Beijing FOCAC summit will again give new impetus and new opportunity for our bilateral relations to benefit our peoples.”

He further added that the summit would also develop strategies that would guide future China-Africa relations.

“There are going to be two outcome documents; the Beijing Declaration towards an even stronger China-Africa community.

“This political document will set strategic guidelines towards the development of China-Africa relations and reflect the consensus of China and Africa on major issues.

“The summit will also review and adopt the FOCAC Beijing action plan which will lay out new approaches and deliverables on enhancing win-win cooperation between the two sides.”

He said that 52 African countries and the African Union Commission would be in attendance.

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He added that the theme of the 2018 FOCAC summit is “China and Africa: Towards an even stronger community with a shared future through win-win cooperation”.

NAN reports that  the  summit is themed “China and Africa: toward an even stronger community with a shared future through win-win cooperation.”

Apart from African leaders, representatives of related regional organisations in Africa and international organizations will also participate in relevant activities of the summit.

Objectives of FOCAC include equal consultation, enhancing understanding, expanding consensus, strengthening friendship and promoting cooperation between African countries and China.

The FOCAC follow-up mechanisms are built at three levels: The Ministerial Conference is held every three years; the Senior Officials Follow-up Meeting and the Senior Officials Preparatory Meeting for the Ministerial Conference are held respectively in the year and a few days before the Ministerial Conference is held.

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