Minister of Information and Culture, Alhaji Lai Mohammed yesterday described China as one of the most important partners in Nigeria’s quest to develop its infrastructure and in its domestic tourism template. The Guardian reports
While receiving the Ambassador of the Peoples Republic of China to Nigeria, Ambassador Gu Xiaojie, who paid him a courtesy visit at his office in Abuja yesterday, Mohammed saidthat is why the Nigerian government holds its relationship with China very dear.
‘’China is a veritable development partner with Nigeria. The relationship between the two countries started at the level of cultural collaboration but has now gone beyond that to the developmental level,’’ the minister said.
He cited the partnership between the Nigerian Television Authority (NTA) and the Star Times of China, the funds being provided by China for Nigeria’s rail project and the involvement of a Chinese firm in the Lagos State Government rail project as instances of the strategic relationship between the two countries.
Mohammed particularly called for more partnership between the two in the area of tourism, saying China has done well, especially in the area of domestic tourism.
While accepting the invitation to attend the First World Conference on Tourism Development in China in May 2016, the Minister said the trip would give him the opportunity to exchange views with China’s tourism authorities on how best to help boost tourism in Nigeria.
Earlier, Ambassador Gu described the relationship between his country and China, which dates back 45 years, as ‘’excellent and strategic.’’
He said both countries attach great importance to the relationship and would work harder to strengthen it, especially in the areas of information, tourism and culture.
In a related development, the Minister has said that government-owned media organizations will be restructured and reinvented in order to position them to compete favourably with other broadcasters.
The minister, while addressing the National Executive Committee of the Radio, Television and Theatre Arts Workers Union (RATTAWU), who a courtesy visit, he said the government media organizations have to be retooled to provide compelling contents that will make them attractive to viewers and advertisers.