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English>>Foreign Affairs

Nigeria to benefit from China's "Belt and Road" initiative: expert

(Xinhua)    19:42, February 24, 2016

LAGOS, Feb. 24 -- Nigeria and other African countries will enjoy the benefits of China's "Belt and Road" initiative, experts have said.

In an interview with Xinhua in Lagos Wednesday, Akeem Owolabi, an international financial expert, said with Beijing's ambitious strategic move, it will be contributing to the growth of Small and Medium Scale Enterprises in Africa, and Nigeria, in particular.

He said the "Belt and Road" initiative indicated that China is looking for new channels to sustain its growth at a time when developing neighbors are experiencing rapidly rising demand.

Nigeria should strategically exploit the opportunity China is providing to improve the nation's economy, Owolabi, who is also a former university lecturer, told Xinhua.

According to him, China's top priority is to stimulate the domestic economy via exports from industries with major overcapacity, a move Nigeria should tap into as crude oil price was dwindling.

Agriculture, manufacturing, processing and the service industry should be producing the bulk of the nation's revenue, he added, noting that China had succeeded in these areas.

"China has developed from a poor inward-looking agricultural country to a global manufacturing powerhouse," said the expert.

"For 180 million people wishing to have higher standard of living, higher quality of life, the emphasis for us is to look inward and think beyond oil," he said, adding that Nigeria "must be open to the world and decide to go back to good governance and transparency so as to reduce corruption and create a better life for the mass."

The "Belt and Road" initiative comprises both the Silk Road Economic Belt and the 21st Century Maritime Silk Road, with visions to connect Asian, European and African countries more closely and promote mutually beneficial cooperation.

(For the latest China news, Please follow People's Daily on Twitter and Facebook)(Editor:Yao Xinyu,Bianji)

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