Why I followed Buhari to China – Nasir El-Rufai

Why I followed Buhari to China – Nasir El-Rufai

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President Muhammadu Buhari has extended further invitation to Chinese investors and tourists to Nigeria and the West African Sub-region. The President made the call yesterday while delivering an address in his capacity as Nigerian leader and chairman of the Economic Community for West African States (ECOWAS) at the high level dialogue between Chinese, African leaders and business representatives at the on-going 74th Summit of the Forum on China-Africa Cooperation (FOCAC) in Beijing.

He told the gathering that countries within the ECOWAS region were endowed with enormous tourist potentials that could be tapped into by China aside its interest in infrastructure investments. President Buhari said that there was need for the government of China to also support the development of tourism-related infrastructure in order to empower citizens of the sub region and create more employment opportunities for reduction of poverty. According to him, as China makes inroad into Africa, the government must ease the process of visa acquisition for businessmen and students from the ECOWAS countries who wish to visit China.

The President pointed out that ECOWAS member states will continue to pay emphasis on encouraging additional foreign direct investment into the sub region. Buhari noted that ECOWAS member states expect that China’s international export and import programmes will provide an enabling environment for market access of their goods and services. He said this would assist to diversify the economy of the region from overreliance on primarily agricultural produce and mineral products and subsequently correct the huge imbalance between China and countries within the sub region.

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