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Remarks of Ambassador Zhou Pingjian of China to Nigeria at the Commissioning Ceremony of the New Terminal Building at Nnamdi Azikiwe International Airport (NAIA), Abuja
20 December 2018, Abuja

Your Excellency President Muhammadu Buhari of the Federal Republic of Nigeria,

Distinguished Ladies and Gentlemen,

Dear Friends,

It is my honour and pleasure to be here. I thank honourable Minister of State for Aviation Sen. Hadi Sirika for inviting me.

Infrastructure matters everywhere. Infrastructure connectivity is part and parcel of the Eight Major Initiatives of the 2018 FOCAC Beijing Summit. Be it highway, railway, waterway, airway, or other ways, in China we often say, "to build fortune, roads should be built first." For Nigeria, improving transportation infrastructure is a key execution priority to achieve the objectives of the ERGP, Nigeria's Economic Recovery and Growth Plan. They say Nigeria is now a huge construction site. As an eyewitness here in this great nation for over two years, I share the same impression.

Please allow me, on the occasion of the commissioning of the biggest terminal building in West Africa today at NAIA Abuja, to warmly congratulate President Buhari, the government and good people of Nigeria, on making steady, sustainable and significant progress for Nigeria's peace and prosperity. My congratulations also go to CCECC and China Exim Bank for proving themselves once again to be reliable partners of Nigeria.

Both China and Nigeria are large developing countries. Under the guidance of President Buhari and President Xi Jinping, the brotherly relationship between China and Nigeria has reached new strategic heights unmatched in history, bringing tangible benefits to our two peoples. Moving forward, we are convinced that China and Nigeria can forge an even stronger strategic partnership. To implement the outcomes of the FOCAC Beijing Summit promptly and efficiently and jointly advance the Belt and Road Initiative, will surely inject strong and new impetus to the mutually beneficial cooperation between China and Nigeria, which is a pacesetter in China-Africa cooperation.

Dear friends,

China cannot develop itself in isolation from the world, and the world needs China for global prosperity. In his speech delivered at a grand gathering to celebrate the 40th anniversary of China's reform and opening-up in Beijing the day before yesterday, President Xi underlined China's commitment to opening up wider to the world and promoting joint efforts to build a community with a shared future for mankind.

The over 1.3 billion Chinese people have been with the almost 200 million Nigerian people in pursuing a shared future. We respect Nigeria, love Nigeria and support Nigeria. We follow a "five-no" approach in our relations with Nigeria. We will remain true to our commitment to Nigerian brothers with full heart and soul.

Thank you.

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