By Adedapo Adesanya
The Lagos State Government has said its doors were still wide open to investors from China willing to tie their money to things that will improve economy of the state.
Governor of Lagos State, Mr Babajide Sanwo-Olu, said this while declaring open the China Hall at the 33rd Lagos International Trade Fair 2019 taking place at Tafawa Balewa Square and themed Connecting Businesses, Creating Value.
The Governor said Lagos was a large market destination in Africa and that the state could become a fashion and technology hub with the right investments, assuring that his administration would continue to put in place policies and invest in infrastructure that encourage business growth in the state.
While adding his input, Mr Liu Junsheng, Commercial Consul of the Consulate of the People’s Republic of China, said China was showcasing four fairs in the fields of textile, housewares, auto spare parts and mechatronics.
He listed them as the Nigeria International Textile Industry Fair (NigeriaTex), International Automotive Parts, Equipment and Service Trade Fair (AutoEquip), International Housewares and Gift Fair (Home Show Nigeria) and Premium Mechatronic Brands China (PBC).”
“We firmly believe that our four fairs will be among the largest and the most effective and professional global B2B exhibition and trade platforms in both Nigeria and West Africa,” he said.
On his part, the President of the Lagos Chamber of Commerce and Industry (LCCI), Mr Babatunde Ruwase, stated that the trade between Nigeria and China stood at $8.6 billion.
“Many Chinese investors and enterprises are based in Nigeria operating in various sectors including oil and gas, manufacturing, agriculture, steel processing and construction among others,” he said.
He then added that the Lagos State Government recently signed a $629 million facility with China Development Bank (CDB) for the completion of Lekki Deep Seaport Project.
Mr Ruwase said another attestation to the strong bilateral ties between both countries was the $3.9 billion contract the Federal Government of Nigeria signed with the China Railway Construction Corporation Limited for the construction of a new Abuja-Itakpe- Lokoja rail line.
“Similar ongoing projects such as Mambilla Power Project, Lagos-Calabar Coastal railway line and Zungeru Hydropower Plant are outcomes of the growing bilateral cooperation between Nigeria and the People’s Republic of China,” he added.
It was also disclosed that there were considerations to relocate the Lagos International Trade Fair to a permanent site in the near future according to the Lagos governor at the event.
He said this was to tackle the operational challenges faced by the organizers of the fair every year and to elevate the event by standards with other international exhibitions across the globe.
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