On January 5, 2021 local time, State Councilor and Foreign Minister Wang Yi and Nigerian Foreign Affairs Minister Geoffrey Onyeama jointly met the press in Abuja, Nigeria.
Wang Yi said, Nigeria is the largest economy and the most populous country in Africa. With important regional and international influences, Nigeria has always been a major strategic partner that China attaches great importance to in Africa.
Noting that China and Nigeria are standing at a fresh start in their relations in 2021 because this significant year marks the 50th anniversary of the establishment of diplomatic ties, Wang Yi said, regardless of changes in the international situation over the past 50 years, China and Nigeria have persisted in mutual respect, mutual trust and mutual support, and walked a path of seeking prosperity in solidarity. The trade volume between China and Nigeria in 2019 was 1,900 times that at the start of the establishment of diplomatic ties.
The two countries’ fruitful cooperation across railway construction, free trade zones, currency swap, satellite launching, and other fields, is in the front rank of regional and international cooperation. The facts have proven that China-Nigeria cooperation, with a strong endogenous driving force for growth, serves the common interests of the two countries and their peoples, and has become a crucial part of China-Africa cooperation and South-South cooperation.
Wang Yi said, in a new historical period, the two countries should inherit and carry forward the tradition of China-Nigeria friendship and usher into the next 50 years of more glorious cooperation between the two countries. He exchanged in-depth views on future cooperation with Foreign Affairs Minister Onyeama in a just-concluded talk, and the two sides have reached seven important consensuses:
We will continue to strengthen anti-pandemic cooperation and firmly support each other until the pandemic is completely overcome; we will set up an intergovernmental committee to be led by the two countries’ foreign ministers that will coordinate and advance mutually beneficial cooperation in various fields; we will deepen the Belt and Road cooperation by closely aligning China’s new development paradigm with Nigeria’s new national development plan; we will vigorously promote the construction of key projects in Nigeria so as to help Nigeria accelerate industrialization and improve its independent development capabilities; we will continue to extend cooperation into areas including digital economy and green economy so as to achieve diversified development; we will deepen military and security cooperation in efforts to enhance Nigeria’s capacity for safeguarding national security; and we will closely coordinate regional and international affairs, practice multilateralism, and safeguard the common interests of developing countries.
Wang Yi said, we believe China-Nigeria strategic partnership will be bound to embrace broader prospects and make greater contributions to the peace and development of Africa and to the stability and prosperity of the world under our concerted efforts.