The House of Representatives committee on China-Nigeria relations was established with the primary objective of strengthening the friendship and cooperation between both nations, according to Chairman Hon Jaafar Yakubu. He elaborated on the committee’s purpose during an exclusive interview at the National Assembly Complex in Abuja.

Hon Jaafar, who represents the Bali, Gassol federal constituency of Taraba State, disclosed that the leadership of the House, under Speaker Tajudeen Abbas, decided to create the committee due to the substantial interest China holds in Nigeria and to facilitate parliamentary and trade relations between the two countries.

He noted that unlike previous assemblies, the 10th assembly recognized the importance of the bilateral trade relationship with China and the significance of China’s interest in Nigeria, which prompted the establishment of this special committee.

“We will continue to leverage this platform to foster friendship and cooperation between Nigeria and China, particularly in the realm of conducting legitimate business and enhancing parliamentary and bilateral relations between the two nations,” Hon Jaafar explained.

The committee has engaged in discussions with the Chinese Ambassador to Nigeria, emphasizing that it provides a legitimate avenue for Chinese businesses to thrive and for the relationship between the two countries to flourish. Hon Jaafar highlighted the mining sector as an example, where there are both legal and illegal miners. He clarified that mining operations typically require the cooperation of local communities, and it is these communities that may be involved in illegal mining activities.

He emphasized the presence of numerous Chinese firms involved in legal and legitimate mining in Nigeria and announced the committee’s intention to conduct a thorough investigation to uncover illegal mining operations in the country.

Furthermore, Hon Jaafar stated that his committee would collaborate with relevant stakeholders to educate Chinese investors about the laws governing mining and business activities in Nigeria, thereby preventing any breaches of these regulations.

Regarding the significance of mining to Nigeria’s economy, the legislator highlighted that the country has the potential to earn around $3 billion annually from solid minerals. He underscored the positive impact of Chinese mining companies, pointing out that over 100,000 Nigerians are currently employed in this sector, which translates to 100,000 families lifted out of poverty.

The lawmaker expressed his committee’s aspirations to visit the Chinese parliament and invite their counterparts from China to Nigeria for discussions on governance and people-to-people cooperation.

Since the establishment of diplomatic relations in 1971, Nigeria and China have enjoyed mutually beneficial cooperation in areas such as trade, investment, foreign policy, education, and technology transfer.


Please enter your comment!
Please enter your name here