|Speech from Consul General Liu Kan in the Groundbreaking Ceremony of Yulong Steel Pipe|
Your Excellency, Permanent Secretary of Lagos State Ministry of Industry and Commerce， Mr. Akodu
Ladies and Gentlemen, dear friends:
I’m very glad to attend the groundbreaking ceremony of Yulong Steel Pipe (Lekki) Investment FZE, and witness the internationalization of Yulong Steel Pipe. The construction of this project not only demonstrates the strategic ambitions of Yulong Steel Pipe to develop the African market, but also represents the Lekki Free Zone’s new stage of development, and further, indicates that bilateral economic and trade cooperation between China and Nigeria will achieve more fruitful results.
On the just-concluded Johannesburg Summit of the Forum on China-Africa Cooperation, President Xi Jinping raised 5-point proposal on further boosting China-Africa friendship and cooperation, namely, adhere to equality-based and win-win cooperation; adhere to an open and inclusive multilateral cooperation; adhere to practical cooperation oriented to capacity-building; adhere to green low-carbon and sustainable development; adhere to cooperation with infrastructure construction prioritized. He also announced 10 major China-Africa cooperation plans for the coming 3 years, covering the areas of industrialization, agricultural modernization, infrastructure, financial services, green development, trade and investment facilitation, poverty reduction and public welfare, public health, people-to-people exchanges, and peace and security. These proposals and plans have provided a comprehensive blueprint and strong motivation for the China-Africa cooperation in the next period, as well as indicated the direction and higher requirements for China-Nigeria cooperation.
In recent years, with the deep and comprehensive development of China-Nigeria strategic partnership, our cooperation in all fields has achieved great results, which especially reflects in our economic relations. Though being affected by the sluggish world economy, the trade volume of our two countries in first 10 months of 2015 was 17.32% less than that of last year, reaching 12.33 billion dollars, Nigeria is still China’s third largest trade partner in Africa. And in the first half of this year, China’s investment in Nigeria was 36.62 million USD; the volume of newly signed engineering contracts in Nigeria was 4.36 billion USD, the volume of completed projects reached 1.58 billion USD, Nigeria is still China’s Third largest investment destination. Now, Nigerian government is upgrading its economy and accelerating the process of industrialization and modernization, China is willing to share its experience on development and contribute its own efforts to promote the industrial connection and production capacity cooperation between our two countries. On important task is to develop the economic and trade cooperation zone into a demonstration platform for industrial agglomeration and international production capacity cooperation. As the jointly constructed economic and trade zone by China and Nigeria, after nearly a decade’s development, Lekki Free Zone is gradually matured, with ever better infrastructure conditions of electricity, roads, water supply, as well as ancillary services like customs and security. Now, the Lekki Free Zone has become the ideal platform for Chinese enterprises to explore the Nigerian market. Up to June this year, there are 43 enterprises in the park, of which 5 have actually leased land and started construction, in addition to a total of 7 companies leased 11,700 square meters standard factory buildings. As a leading enterprise in Chinese Steel Pipe Industry, Yulong Steel Pipe’s decision of starting its business in Lekki Free Zone demonstrate the pioneering spirit of Chinese enterprises. I hope in the future cooperation, Yulong and Lekki Free Zone would work together, achieve win-win results, and make more contribution to the Nigeria’s social and economic development and the progress of China-Nigerian strategic partnership. Chinese Consulate in Lagos will continue to provide good service to all Chinese enterprises, including Yulong Steel Pipe, for their sound and smooth development in Nigeria.
Distinguished guests, ladies and gentlemen,
An ancient Chinese philosopher Xunzi said: If you can grasp the right time and start your work at the right place, with sound internal and external environment, anything could be done well. I think the success of Johannesburg Summit of the Forum on China-Africa Cooperation will promote the China-Africa cooperation to a new height, and provide more opportunities for Chinese enterprises’ development in Nigeria. We look forward to more and more Chinese enterprises to seize the opportunities and achieve their business ambitions.
Finally, I wish the Lekki project of Yulong Steel Pipe progress smoothly, completed and put into production as soon as possible!
Wish Lekki Free Zone, with the joint efforts from China and Nigeria, getting better and better