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• Chinese president meets Chinese, Nigerian businessmen

• Chinese president meets Chinese, Nigerian businessmen

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Chinese president meets Chinese, Nigerian businessmen
862 words

28 April 2006

10:57 AM

BBC Monitoring Africa

BBCAP

English

(c) 2006 The British Broadcasting Corporation. All Rights Reserved. No material may be reproduced except with the express permission of The British Broadcasting Corporation.
Text of report entitled: "Hu Jintao meets Chinese, Nigerian entrepreneurs' representatives", carried by official Chinese news agency Xinhua (New China News Agency)
Abuja, 27 April: In the Nigerian capital of Abuja, President Hu Jintao met with representatives of Chinese and Nigerian entrepreneurs on the 27th. During the meeting, Hu Jintao pointed out: China is the largest developing country in the world, while Nigeria is an important developing country in Africa. Strengthening mutually beneficial cooperation between the two countries not only accords with both sides' mutual interests but also is conducive to world economic development.
At 0930 hours local time Hu Jintao went to the conference hall of the hotel where he was staying and cordially shook hands with Chinese and Nigerian entrepreneurs' representatives and Nigerian government officials who were there awaiting his arrival. Afterwards Hu Jintao had an informal discussion with them on expanding the two countries' economic and trade cooperation.
Lian Mingxiang, general manager of the China Petrochemical (Group) Corporation's Nigeria-registered company; Rufay [name as transliterated], manager of the China-Nigeria cooperative communications satellite project under Nigeria's space administration; and Zhou Tianxiang, general manager of the China Civil Engineering Construction Corporation Group's Nigeria-registered company, spoke one after another. They gave accounts of how they were respectively doing in relevant China-Nigeria economic cooperation projects. Rufay thanked President Hu Jintao for his concern and support for strengthening Nigerian-Chinese economic and trade cooperation and indicated that he would properly complete the cooperative project with the Chinese side by making great efforts in cooperating with them.
After hearing their accounts, Hu Jintao made a speech. He first extended sincere greetings to all the friends among the two countries' industrial and commercial circles who made positive contributions to developing Sino-Nigerian economic and trade relations. He said: In the 35 years since we established diplomatic relations, bilateral relations developed comprehensively and economic and trade cooperation saw remarkable successes. Over the past five years the volume of Sino-Nigerian bilateral trade increased to nearly 3bn dollars from 1bn dollars. China and Nigeria already are each other's important partners in economic and trade cooperation. Sino-Nigerian economic and trade cooperation is developing towards an even higher level and even more wide-ranging fields and the two countries have increasingly close cooperation in the investment field. Mutually beneficial cooperation between the two sides has brought material benefits to the two peoples as well as injected vigour into the development of the two countries' relations.
Hu Jintao indicated: To lift Sino-Nigerian economic and trade cooperation to an even higher level, I am making three suggestions: First, we should enlarge the scale of trade and optimize the trade composition. China has a population of 1.3bn and great market potential, while Nigeria, with its population of 130m, also is a large market. Sino-Nigerian trade has tremendous potential; provided enterprises on both sides give play to their own advantages and come up with competitive products, they will have every ability to complement each other in advantage. The Chinese side is willing to take positive measures to facilitate even more Nigerian products' entry into the Chinese market. Second, we should promote reciprocal investment and strengthen cooperation in the fields of telecommunications, electric power, and infrastructure. The Chinese side will continue to promote investment and business initiation in Nigeria by enterprises with strength and encourage Chinese enterprises to carry out, in various forms, cooperation with their Nigerian counterparts and help Nigeria improve its capability of independent development by strengthening the transfer of technology and training of personnel amid cooperation. The Chinese side also welcomes Nigerian enterprises' investment in China. We encourage financial institutions on both sides to strengthen cooperation to provide strong support for the enterprises' investment activities. Third, we should broaden and deepen the two countries' cooperation in the energy field. There are very broad prospects for Sino-Nigerian cooperation in the energy field and the Chinese side supports Chinese enterprises in deepening and broadening cooperation with their Nigerian counterparts in this field.
In conclusion, Hu Jintao said: Enterprises are the mainstay of the market as well as bilateral economic and trade cooperation. Constant development of Sino-Nigerian economic and trade cooperation depends on the joint efforts of entrepreneurs on both sides. I hope the entrepreneurs will seize the opportunity and dare to blaze new trails to make new, even greater contributions to China and Nigeria's common development and prosperity.
Hu Jintao's speech evoked positive echoes among the Chinese and Nigerian entrepreneurs' representatives. The entrepreneurs' representatives from both countries indicated that they would try hard to open a new prospect of mutual benefits and gains for Sino-Nigerian economic and trade cooperation by catching firm hold of the historical opportunity for Sino-Nigerian economic and trade development and making full use of the advantage of a high complementariness in the two countries' economic and trade cooperation.
Soon afterward Hu Jintao cordially received functionaries of the Chinese embassy in Nigeria and representatives of Chinese-funded enterprises, overseas Chinese, and ethnic Chinese.
Source: Xinhua news agency domestic service, Beijing, in Chinese 1320 gmt 27 Apr 06
a456e1c0
Document BBCAP00020060428e24s0028l

Chinese president meets Chinese, Nigerian businessmen
862 words

28 April 2006

10:53 AM

BBC Monitoring Asia Pacific

BBCAPP

English

(c) 2006 The British Broadcasting Corporation. All Rights Reserved. No material may be reproduced except with the express permission of The British Broadcasting Corporation.
Text of report entitled: "Hu Jintao meets Chinese, Nigerian entrepreneurs' representatives", carried by official Chinese news agency Xinhua (New China News Agency)
Abuja, 27 April: In the Nigerian capital of Abuja, President Hu Jintao met with representatives of Chinese and Nigerian entrepreneurs on the 27th. During the meeting, Hu Jintao pointed out: China is the largest developing country in the world, while Nigeria is an important developing country in Africa. Strengthening mutually beneficial cooperation between the two countries not only accords with both sides' mutual interests but also is conducive to world economic development.
At 0930 hours local time Hu Jintao went to the conference hall of the hotel where he was staying and cordially shook hands with Chinese and Nigerian entrepreneurs' representatives and Nigerian government officials who were there awaiting his arrival. Afterwards Hu Jintao had an informal discussion with them on expanding the two countries' economic and trade cooperation.
Lian Mingxiang, general manager of the China Petrochemical (Group) Corporation's Nigeria-registered company; Rufay [name as transliterated], manager of the China-Nigeria cooperative communications satellite project under Nigeria's space administration; and Zhou Tianxiang, general manager of the China Civil Engineering Construction Corporation Group's Nigeria-registered company, spoke one after another. They gave accounts of how they were respectively doing in relevant China-Nigeria economic cooperation projects. Rufay thanked President Hu Jintao for his concern and support for strengthening Nigerian-Chinese economic and trade cooperation and indicated that he would properly complete the cooperative project with the Chinese side by making great efforts in cooperating with them.
After hearing their accounts, Hu Jintao made a speech. He first extended sincere greetings to all the friends among the two countries' industrial and commercial circles who made positive contributions to developing Sino-Nigerian economic and trade relations. He said: In the 35 years since we established diplomatic relations, bilateral relations developed comprehensively and economic and trade cooperation saw remarkable successes. Over the past five years the volume of Sino-Nigerian bilateral trade increased to nearly 3bn dollars from 1bn dollars. China and Nigeria already are each other's important partners in economic and trade cooperation. Sino-Nigerian economic and trade cooperation is developing towards an even higher level and even more wide-ranging fields and the two countries have increasingly close cooperation in the investment field. Mutually beneficial cooperation between the two sides has brought material benefits to the two peoples as well as injected vigour into the development of the two countries' relations.
Hu Jintao indicated: To lift Sino-Nigerian economic and trade cooperation to an even higher level, I am making three suggestions: First, we should enlarge the scale of trade and optimize the trade composition. China has a population of 1.3bn and great market potential, while Nigeria, with its population of 130m, also is a large market. Sino-Nigerian trade has tremendous potential; provided enterprises on both sides give play to their own advantages and come up with competitive products, they will have every ability to complement each other in advantage. The Chinese side is willing to take positive measures to facilitate even more Nigerian products' entry into the Chinese market. Second, we should promote reciprocal investment and strengthen cooperation in the fields of telecommunications, electric power, and infrastructure. The Chinese side will continue to promote investment and business initiation in Nigeria by enterprises with strength and encourage Chinese enterprises to carry out, in various forms, cooperation with their Nigerian counterparts and help Nigeria improve its capability of independent development by strengthening the transfer of technology and training of personnel amid cooperation. The Chinese side also welcomes Nigerian enterprises' investment in China. We encourage financial institutions on both sides to strengthen cooperation to provide strong support for the enterprises' investment activities. Third, we should broaden and deepen the two countries' cooperation in the energy field. There are very broad prospects for Sino-Nigerian cooperation in the energy field and the Chinese side supports Chinese enterprises in deepening and broadening cooperation with their Nigerian counterparts in this field.
In conclusion, Hu Jintao said: Enterprises are the mainstay of the market as well as bilateral economic and trade cooperation. Constant development of Sino-Nigerian economic and trade cooperation depends on the joint efforts of entrepreneurs on both sides. I hope the entrepreneurs will seize the opportunity and dare to blaze new trails to make new, even greater contributions to China and Nigeria's common development and prosperity.
Hu Jintao's speech evoked positive echoes among the Chinese and Nigerian entrepreneurs' representatives. The entrepreneurs' representatives from both countries indicated that they would try hard to open a new prospect of mutual benefits and gains for Sino-Nigerian economic and trade cooperation by catching firm hold of the historical opportunity for Sino-Nigerian economic and trade development and making full use of the advantage of a high complementariness in the two countries' economic and trade cooperation.
Soon afterward Hu Jintao cordially received functionaries of the Chinese embassy in Nigeria and representatives of Chinese-funded enterprises, overseas Chinese, and ethnic Chinese.
Source: Xinhua news agency domestic service, Beijing, in Chinese 1320 gmt 27 Apr 06
a456e125
Document BBCAPP0020060428e24s004sb
National/Foreign

CHINA FIRMS TIES WITH AFRICA ; BEIJING SIGNS BUSINESS DEALS WITH NIGERIA


Dulue Mbachu, Associated Press

587 words

28 April 2006

The Boston Globe

BSTNGB

THIRD

A13

English

© 2006 New York Times Company. Provided by ProQuest Information and Learning. All Rights Reserved.
ABUJA, Nigeria President Hu Jintao of China said yesterday his government will seek closer ties with Africa a resource-rich frontier for the world's fastest growing economy after signing a series of major business deals with oil-rich Nigeria.
Hu, on the second and final day visiting Africa's largest oil producer before heading to Kenya, said China is seeking "a strategic partnership" with the continent that would improve living standards for Africa.
Hu and Nigeria's president, Olusegun Obasanjo, signed an agreement Wednesday requiring Nigeria's petroleum ministry to give China's state oil firm preferential access to four blocks of oil exploration rights in return for China taking over a money-losing refinery in the city of Kaduna.
China also agreed to build a hydroelectric power station in the northeastern Mambilla plateau and a fast-rail system linking the capital, Abuja, with the economic capital, Lagos.
And two Chinese telecommunication firms will install rural telephone service across large swathes of Nigeria with the help of Chinese government loans worth more than $200 million.
China's interest and growing profile in Africa has worried Western rivals for the continent's resources and markets. And some Africans have complained about being flooded with cheap Chinese goods. Nigeria is the top African producer of crude and the seventh- largest in the world, normally pumping 2.5 million barrels per day. It was the first sub-Saharan Africa stop on a tour by Hu that has included the United States, Saudi Arabia, and Morocco.
Militants claiming responsibility for oil-installation attacks and kidnappings that have shut down more than 20 percent of Nigeria's oil production this year vowed more violence in response to the Chinese deals.
"They should go back to China and do all these things they say for the millions of starving Chinese. We want control over our resources, not Chinese management and development," the Movement for the Emancipation of the Niger Delta said in an e-mail to the Associated Press.
China needs energy, timber, minerals, and other raw materials Africa can provide, and in January, China's state-controlled oil firm, CNOOC, announced it had reached a deal to pay $2.3 billion for a 45 percent stake in a Nigerian offshore oil field.
Obasanjo's office said as Hu wrapped up his visit yesterday that China had granted Nigeria $5.7 million in aid to be used in part to buy antimalaria medicines and to train Nigerians in malaria control and prevention.
With 130 million people, Africa's most populous country is also a major market for Chinese-produced goods. Chinese companies have been accused of flooding local markets with fake and substandard goods, notably textiles. In December, Nigerian officials took the dramatic step of shutting down several shopping centers run by Chinese traders in Lagos.
In the last five years, China's trade with Africa has grown fourfold, to $40 billion in 2005.
The world's most populous country, with 1.3 billion people, has also set new development targets to increase its gross domestic product and lower energy consumption, the Chinese leader told Nigerian lawmakers yesterday.
"By the year 2020 . . . GDP would quadruple that of 2000 to reach $4 trillion, averaging $3,000 per head," Hu said.
China, a veto-wielding UN Security Council member, also has offered key diplomatic support to some governments shunned by the West, such as Sudan and Zimbabwe.
Document BSTNGB0020060428e24s0006j

Chinese President Endorses FG's Reforms
by Lere Ojedokun And Abiodun Adelaja

722 words

28 April 2006

05:14 AM

All Africa

AFNWS

English

(c) 2006 AllAfrica, All Rights Reserved
Abuja, Apr 28, 2006 (Daily Champion/All Africa Global Media via COMTEX) --
CHINESE President, Hu Jintao yesterday endorsed on-going Federal Government reform programmes even as he wooed federal lawmakers to support a reinvigorated China-Africa economic ties for the benefit of both nations.
Addressing a joint session of the National Assembly in Abuja, President Jintao assured that Chinese government would continue to work with Africa to make innovative efforts at keeping the China-Africa cooperation as well as injecting new vitality into it.
This promise came as Nigeria and China have agreed to strengthen bilateral cooperation in agriculture, power generation, energy, infrastructural development, telecommunications and human resources development.
President Jintao while addressing the lawmakers, said he shared the desire of African countries to maintain independence and sovereignty and, pursue models of development that suit their national conditions.
"China is firm in upholding the diversity of the world and diversified models of development. We hold that countries should respect and learn from each other and different civilisations should coexist in harmonious benefit from each other through exchanges and competition and common grounds," President Jintao stated.
He specifically pledged the committee of the Chinese government to assist Nigeria boost agriculture, health and real sectors of the economy.
Restating his government's desire to reach out to other parts of the world, President Jintao said China's current development exploits did not pose a threat to any country, a veiled reference to United States and other members of G8.
"In short, history has proved and will continue to prove that China's development is peaceful, open and cooperative in nature. China's development will not pose a threat to anyone. On the contrary, it will bring more development opportunities to the world," he explained.
He disclosed that the forthcoming China-Africa cooperation Beijing Summit and the Third Ministerial Conference billed for November this year will further boost China-Africa ties.
Earlier, Senate President, Chief Ken Nnamani said Nigeria would benefit immensely from renewed China-Nigeria relationship, urging the Federal Government to adopt Chinese model in its development strategy.
Reacting to President Jintao's address, lawmakers comprising Okwudili Uzoka, Chidi Nwagu and Independence Ogunewe expressed optimism that the bilateral ties between the countries would accelerate Nigeria's economic recovery programme.
Meanwhile, the decision for a bilateral cooperation was contained in communique issued at the end of bilateral talks between Presidents Olusegun Obasanjo and Jintao who rounded off a two- day state visit to Nigeria.
The two leaders agreed that both countries have great potentials and broad prospects for greater economic cooperation.
"The Federal Government and the Chinese Government will therefore continue to create favourable conditions to facilitate increased bilateral trade and investment while encouraging entrepreneurs and investors from both countries to increase bilateral exchanges and expand areas of cooperation", they said.
Both countries also expressed their readiness to "work in the spirit of their existing strategic partnership to step up cooperation in international affairs, uphold the rights and interests of developing countries, promote world peace and development, and foster a harmonious world of durable peace and common prosperity".
President Jintao and his delegation expressed their appreciation of Nigeria's efforts to maintaining regional peace and promoting African integration.
The Chinese leader had at the talks with Nigerian Government officials led by President Obasanjo last Wednesday announced fresh 46 million Yuan Chinese aid to Nigeria.
The aid is to be used for the implementation of projects well as for the provision of anti-malarial medicines and the training of Nigerian health personnel on malaria control and prevention.
President Jintao also announced the provision by the Chinese Government of new export credit to Nigeria for infrastructural development.
President Obasanjo expressed the Federal Government's appreciation of the export credit, saying his Administration will do everything possible to utilize it effectively for the rapid development of rail transportation and power generation, among other things.
The President also thanked his Chinese counterpart for the additional financial aid to Nigeria.
He recalled that on his earlier state visit to China, an agreement was reached to develop "strategic relations and partnerships between the countries.
"On both sides, we have done everything possible to actualize that agreement. This visit is bound to deepen and strengthen our relationship," President Obasanjo remarked.
Document AFNWS00020060428e24s000mg

Insight & Opinion

WTO study put a price on disaster.


With both natural and man-made disasters on the increase, a report analyses their effect on world trade — and both insurers and shipowners need to take notice of the implications, writes David Osler

1,275 words

28 April 2006

Lloyd's List

LL

7

English

(c) 2006 Informa PLC
TSUNAMIS. Famines. Hurricanes. Nuclear meltdowns. As human beings, we are all capable of fellow-feeling for the victims of disaster, as the frequently massive response to subsequent charity appeals underlines.
But there are business implications as well. Insurers and reinsurers, for instance, have long taken an interest in this area.
Shipowners, too, would do well to keep an eye on extreme weather events.
Major incidents can take their toll on a country’s ability to trade, cutting both exports and imports and therefore tonne-miles.
In this increasingly globalised and just-in-time world, the disruption that a catastrophe can cause is obvious.
Now a team of three Switzerland-based economists has analysed the relationship between disasters and world trade in a paper available from the World Trade Organisation.
The impact of disasters on international trade” was written by Martin Gassebner, Alexander Keck and Robert Teh. Their key findings are that the less democratic and the smaller a country is the more its trade flows are reduced when the worst happens.
The authors point out that 2005 was the most expensive year on record in terms of damage to insured property caused by disasters.
Estimates from Swiss Re put total disaster-related claims at $83bn.
But this was simply the continuation of an established trend to more frequent and destructive natural disasters.
Munich Re has been crunching the numbers on that. In the 1960s, it calculates, average annual losses from disasters came to $8.8bn in 2005 values.
But over the past 10 years the annual average has been $57.5bn.
So what is behind the upsurge? Better reporting and collection of data is certainly a factor.
And, while opinion is divided over the causes of climate change, few dispute that the world is getting warmer.
An index of the potential destructiveness of hurricanes — known as total power dissipation — has increased markedly in the North Atlantic since the mid-1970s.
Economic and social factors have contributed to the increasing likelihood of large losses,” the authors write. “The growth of wealth puts more valuable property at risk.”
The impact of a disaster on trade can come either directly or indirectly.
Direct impacts on exports can occur due to human losses and injuries and the destruction and damage of physical capital and equipment.
Damage to infrastructure, including roads, bridges, railways and telecoms, can also mean disruption.
But, in the case of imports, most of the impact is indirect and is transmitted through a reduction in aggregate economic activity.
For instance, a study of catastrophes in the Caribbean and Latin America from 1970 to 1999 found substantial declines in investment and output.
Given inadequate or undeveloped mechanisms for risk bearing — for example insurance — households are unable to smooth their consumption in response to the supply side shocks,” the authors conclude.
With the dependence of imports on gross domestic product, a disaster can hurt inward trade if the level of aggregate economic activity contracts, even temporarily.
The larger the share of trade in a given economy, the greater the damage.
Small island states in the Caribbean are at a particular disadvantage. They suffer from a high frequency of natural disasters that their economies are too small to shrug off.
Small and poorly diversified economies with spatially concentrated productive assets are highly vulnerable,” the report says.
Interestingly, however, there are some counterveiling tendencies. Rebuilding of damaged infrastructure usually means an increase in imports.
When it comes to long-term effects, the picture is less clear.
Some research has found that countries subject to frequent climatic disaster actually experience higher rates of human capital accumulation, total factor productivity and economic growth.
This is the result of what economists call a substitution effect, with an emphasis on investment in human capital precisely because physical capital is at higher risk of damage or destruction.
Disasters also provide an opportunity — if that is the right word — for countries to update their capital stock and adopt new technologies.
Several studies have pointed to economic and political development as another variable.
The number of disaster victims is strongly correlated to a country’s per capita income, level of income inequality and degree of democracy.
Well-run polities that enforce such basics as preparedness drills and building and zoning rules see fewer fatalities in earthquakes.
Democratic politicians have an incentive to plan for and respond to the consequences of disasters. Otherwise they face being voted out of office.
The paper then turns from purely theoretical considerations to analysis of some of the data. The best available source is the Emergency Events Database, known as EM-DAT, maintained by the Université Catholique de Louvain.
Criteria for entry include the death of 10 or more people, 100 or more people affected and either the declaration of a state of emergency or a call for international assistance.
A distinction is made between natural and technological disasters.
In the former category are droughts, earthquakes, epidemics, extreme temperatures, famines, floods, insect infestation, mudslides, volcanic eruptions, waves, wildfires and windstorms.
Technological disasters include chemical spills and radiation leaks, transport accidents including airline crashes, explosions, fires and so on.
Gassebner et al consider the years 1962 to 2004, the period for which detailed bilateral trade flow figures are available. Excluding epidemics, there were 12,666 disasters recorded, of which 60% were natural.
There is also a statistically significant increase in the number of disasters over time, whether natural or technological,” the report notes.
Disasters have tended to be concentrated in certain countries, namely those with large land areas and those located in Asia. China, India, the US, the Philippines, Indonesia, Bangladesh, Brazil, Mexico, Nigeria and Pakistan alone account for 40% of all disasters.
The WTO team also adapt Munich Re’s six-point disaster classification system, which grades incidents in severity from “small-scale loss event” to “great natural catastrophe”.
The researchers confine their analysis to great natural catastrophes, where loss of life exceeds 1,000, injuries exceed 1,000 and either at least 100,000 people are affected or the amount of damages top $1bn in year 2000 dollars.
As a result the number of disasters for analysis was 1,589, or which 1,548 were natural and 41 technological.
Results show that major disasters create a significant negative trade effect for both imports and exports.
Reconstruction imports partially compensate for, but do not offset, the decline in import demand. Both country size and democracy emerge as key variables.
Democratic societies are better in coping with disasters,” the authors say. “Nonetheless, even in countries with the most democratic score, disasters still reduce both exports and imports, all else being equal.”
This result is actually remarkably stable. Different samples, model set-ups and estimation techniques all come to the same conclusion.
So what is the outlook for the future? As some of the graphs that accompany the report underline, disasters are on a sharp uptrend that can reasonably be expected to continue.
Indeed, the scale of events some environmentalists are predicting tower over anything we have seen so far.
With San Francisco recently marking the 100th anniversary of the 7.9 Richter scale earthquake of 1906, we should all remember that sometimes the worst really does come to the worst.
The impact of disasters on international trade, by Martin Gassebner, Alexander Keck and Robert Teh, can be downloaded from www.wto.org/English/res_e/ reser_e/ersd200604_e.htm
1422662
Document LL00000020060427e24s0001g

Markets

China gains oil drilling foothold in Nigeria.


Licences granted in exchange for help with infrastructure development and the fight against bird flu

590 words

28 April 2006

Lloyd's List

LL

4

English

(c) 2006 Informa PLC

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