China begins bilateral trade talks with FG to restore confidence
By Centus Nweze
Bilateral talks that begun, Monday 4, this year, between Nigeria and China is believed to be attempt by the Asian country to be diplomatic moves to restore global confidence and assuage world sentiments in the wake of Western media onslaught over its alleged culpability in the outbreak of the deadly Corona-Virus that has killed more than 200,000 people worldwide.
The West especially the United States, Italy, France, the UK, are some of the worse hit countries with average death from the disease placed above 1000 persons.
China has sent a number of its high ranking officials to interface with the federal government as part of efforts by the Asian country to deepen bilateral relations with its African counterpart.
The Chinese delegation which is expected in the country from Monday 4th, will discuss a number of issues relating to strengthening Nigeria/China relations, and the promotion of common interests in the multilateral fora.
A statement on Monday by the Spokesman for the Nigerian Ministry of Foreign Affairs, Ferdinand Nwoye, said the Chinese delegation will be led Wang Yi, State Councilor and Minister of Foreign Affairs of the Peoples’ Republic of China.
While the Minister of Foreign Affairs Geoffrey Onyeama will lead the Nigerian delegation made up of the Ministers of Transportation, Trade and Investment, Health, and Defence, among others.
The two-day official visit will be rounded off with a visit to President Muhammadu Buhari, at the State House in Abuja.
The visit comes amid heightened trade tension between the West and China with experts agreeing that the Asian country is looking to deepen its trade roots in major African economies.
Corona-Virus was traced to a wet-market in Wuhan, China, where live and dead wild animals that people ate for food, improved health and for other purposes were sold.
Even after the discovery of a vaccine for it’s cure, the virus has since mutated into a new variant which many fear may resist the globally accepted Pfizer-made vaccine.
In November 2020, China slammed trade restrictions of over $19 billion a year on Australia following calls by the Australian Prime Minister, Scott Morrison, for an international inquiry into the source of the Covid-19 outbreak.
In May 2020, China had threatened to sanction U.S. lawmakers who were particularly critical of its response to the Corona-Virus pandemic.
A move experts said was unprecedented as Beijing pushes back on international condemnation about its handling of the virus’ spread.