China has indicated a strong interest to build a cultural center in Anambra State.
This was revealed during a courtesy visit by the Chinese Ambassador to Nigeria, Dr Zou Pingian on the Governor of Anambra State, Chief Willie Obiano at the Governor’s Lodge, Amawbia on Tuesday.
The proposed cultural center will accommodate a theater and other facilities that will facilitate a cultural exchange between Anambra and China.
In his remarks, the Chinese Envoy thanked the Governor for the warm reception given to him and his team and commended him for making Anambra an investor friendly environment for business and tourism.
He acknowledged that the Governor is working and commended the contributions of Anambra business men to the development of the Chinese business environment, stating that China had moved up 36 places in the global ranking for ease of doing business.
Ambassador Pingjian assured of the readiness of the Chinese Government to reciprocate the favour by ensuring that Anambra receives the necessary assistance it requires especially with regards to foreign direct investment from China, technological and cultural exchange and other bilateral relationships as the Chinese and the Anambra state Government share the same vision of creating a friendly business environment.
Responding to the Ambassador’s remarks, Governor Obiano welcomed the Chinese delegation to the State, describing the relationship between the State and the Chinese Government as cordial.
He reiterated his administration’s commitment to the Umueri Airport City project in partnership with the Chinese company Sinoking Limited revealing that the state Government has agreed as part of negotiations to construct one of the double runways needed by the airport while the Chinese company put finishing touches to their plan.
He expressed regret that the seizure of the drone brought into the country by the Chinese aviation company for the aerial survey of the airport site by the Nigerian Customs Service had pegged progress on the project back by one whole year and expressed optimism that with its recent release, the Chinese would hasten up on the project to douse the anxiety that the delayed had created among the people.
Governor Obiano also informed the Chinese envoy that the state is partnering with different Chinese companies on different road and erosion projects and expressed hope that the technological and cultural exchange would bring more benefits to the State.
He informed the Ambassador that he had written the Chinese Consular General, requesting the Chinese Government to set up a consular office in the State as most of the visa applications made by Nigerians come from Ndi-Anambra, pointing out that the State and the Chinese Government would enjoy more robust relationship if a consular office were located in the state.
Governor Obiano further drew the attention of the Chinese delegation to the rising tourism industry of the State and called for more interest from the Chinese businesses in exploring the huge potentials of the sector.
Earlier in her opening remarks the Commissioner for Diaspora Affairs, Indigenous Arts,Culture and Tourism, Mrs Sally Mbanefo had thanked the Chinese Ambassador for inviting the State officially to the Chinese New Year celebration 2019 in Abuja and for the numerous relationship ties enjoyed by the ministry, especially in the area of cultural exchange.
By Daniel Scott Ofoneme