By Moses Adeniyi
The Executive Governor of Lagos State, Mr. Babajide Sanwo-Olu has called for a mutual bilateral engagement as the Chinese embassy in Lagos pays a courtesy call to the Governor on business opportunities.
The Governor made this call at the State House on Monday, while receiving a team of Chinese delegates on business corporation with Lagos State.
Responding to the collaborative proposals, Sanwo-Olu challenged the Chinese companies seeking business cooperation in the State to ensure the engagements yield mutual benefits in terms of technology transfer in various sectors of the economy of the State.
Noting the population strength of the State, Sanwo-Olu added that the engagement should be such that would create an atmosphere of employment opportunities for Lagosians.
“The Chinese companies in Lagos are growing by the day and we are challenging them to ensure that it’s not just to grow the business, but let’s see real technology transfer; let’s see skills being exchanged; let’s see real foreign direct investment coming in; let’s see opportunities in the manufacturing sector, let’s see opportunities in agriculture, in construction, in agro-allied industry, because we have a population here.
“I’m sure you will also know what it means is that we also need to feed our people and to give our people opportunities for job employment.
“So we are going to continue to engage with your businesses, and we’ve gotten a lot of them come around, but it’s not just to visit, it’s which one turns to real business opportunities for both of ourselves.” Sanwo-Olu said.
Speaking on the readiness of the Lagos State to collaborate with Chinese companies, Sanwo-Olu said “We are hoping to be able to further strengthen adequate collaboration. We currently have a lot of engagements, collaborative efforts, and one of them is the Lekki free trade zone which is a joint venture and an enterprise with the Lagos State Government.
“We have also being speaking on a lot of other collaborative areas where we can have both sister and city-state relationship like partners that see developments. And we also can learn from each other.
“So with your coming, I’m sure that we have closed up a lot of those initial engagements we’ve had with a few of those Chinese companies and let’s take it to transaction. Let’s take it further to real development. Let’s take it to proper exchange of technologies, ideas, exchange of innovative things.
“We have a very skillful population that is willing and ready to work. So let’s take this as an opportunity for us to deepen to open new business ventures for our people.”
Speaking during the courtesy visit, the Consul General of the Chinese Embassy in Lagos, Mr. Chu Mao Ming, expressed the readiness of the Chinese government to work with the governor to further strengthen bilateral relationship.
“Today I’m bringing business representatives both from the public and the private sectors.
“We will like to work with you and your government to promote cooperation between China and Nigeria, particularly in the South-east and the Southwest in many fields.” Mao Ming said.
According to him the China’s National Offshore Oil Corporation, the third largest oil company in China, is set to expand its investment foothold in Lagos from U.S. $18billion to U.S. $300billion.
He said the company has “invested up to the end of 2018 in Lagos, U.S. $18 billion in Lagos and I heard that the company will invest up to U.S. $300 billion more in Lagos”