President Buhari is in China on an official visit aimed at securing greater support from Beijing for the development of Nigeria’s infrastructure, especially in the power, roads, railways, aviation, water supply and housing sectors.
At the official opening of the forum were Chairman of National Reform and Development Commission, Mr Xu Shaoshi, Nigeria’s Minister of Industry, Trade & Investment, Okechukwu Enemalah, National Security Adviser, Babagana Monguno and Minister of Foreign Affairs Geoffrey Onyeama.
Some other Nigerian government officials present at the opening were, Minister of Industry, Trade & Investment, Okechukwu Enemalah and Minister of Foreign Affairs, Geoffrey Onyeama.
Other Chinese government officials at the ceremony were Governor of National Development Bank, Mr Zheng Zhijie, Chairman of National Reform and Development Commission, Mr Xu Shaoshi and Assistant Minister of Foreign Affairs, Mr Qian Hongshan.
The Nigerian government is looking to secure more funds from China, with the Minister of Finance, Mrs Kemi Adeosun, saying the oil rich nation would consider issuing Chinese panda bond to plug deficit in the 2016 budget.
Earlier, the Industrial and Commercial Bank of China Ltd (ICBC), the world’s biggest lender, and Nigeria’s central bank signed an agreement on yuan transactions.
“It means that the renminbi (yuan) is free to flow among different banks in Nigeria and the renminbi has been included in the foreign exchange reserves of Nigeria,” the Director General of the Foreign Ministry’s African Affairs Department, Lin Songtian, told reporters.
The agreement was reached following a meeting between Nigerian President Muhammadu Buhari and Chinese President Xi Jinping.