Tourism: How Nigeria Can Benefit From Bilateral Ties With China - THE ENCOUNTER NEWS


Sunday, April 10, 2022

Tourism: How Nigeria Can Benefit From Bilateral Ties With China


ABUJA - Since Nigeria established bilateral relations with China in 1971, both nations have enjoyed robust relations in multiple areas even as they look forward to a more rewarding future.

One critical sector of the bilateral ties is tourism, a sector that contributes immensely to the GDP of so many countries. This was the focus of the China-Nigeria Tourism and Culture Forum held at the Chinese Cultural Centre in Abuja, recently.

China said it is ready to bring its investors and entrepreneurs to play a major role in upgrading Nigeria’s vast tourist centers and make them viable centres that will attract people within and outside Nigeria just as it is done in China.

Cultural Counsellor of the Chinese Embassy in Abuja and the Director of the China Cultural Centre in Nigeria, Li Xuda, pledged to help Nigeria harness its rich culture and boost its vast potential in tourism to add value to the Nigerian Economy.

The Chinese Counsellor has traveled to many parts of Nigeria and judging from his tours and experience he said there is no exaggeration that Nigeria has rich natural resources and historical and cultural heritages, adding that Nigerian tourism has a promising future with huge potential to be released.

He said we are having this event “To let more people know about the potentials in this area and let more people play a leading role in this area because, through this sector, the two countries' development will be lifted to a new level.

“I will do more to introduce Nigeria’s rich tourism to China, let the Chinese know about Nigeria’s tourism, Nigerian culture. We will do more promotion work for Nigerian tourism and culture development and we will encourage Chinese entrepreneurs, and Chinese Companies to invest in Nigeria tourism” he said.

He said further that China will assist in capacity building, training and skill acquisition for Nigerians in this sector.

The experience of China in tourism development is worthy of emulation because China’s Tourism has become an essential contributor to its domestic economy since the beginning of the reform and opening up in the early 1980s. Places in China, such as the Great Wall, Forbidden City, Summer Palace, West Lake of Hangzhou, Yellow Mountain of Anhui province etc have attracted numerous Chinese and international tourists.

According to Xuda  “The Chinese tourism market has transformed into one of the world’s most-watched inbound and outbound tourist markets. The number of domestic trips reached six billion in 2019, indicating a remarkable increase compared to the number of trips made in China ten years ago. Also in 2019, China’s revenue from tourism had amounted to about 5.7 trillion Yuan, close to 1 trillion US dollars.”

The most important driver of the success in tourism is infrastructure construction such as high-quality roads, easy access to transportation, convenient tourist facilities such as tourist service centers, and high-standard tourist hotels. These are the factors that developed Chinese tourism.

China also encourages local businessmen and foreigners to invest in its tourism industry and protect their interests by implementing related rules and regulations.

Nigeria has numerous tourist centres but they scarcely attract tourists in recent times because of poor infrastructure coupled with the seemingly unending insecurity bedeviling the country.

Nigeria must rise to address these challenges and improve its tourism as one of the fastest growing non-oil sectors especially now that the country is facing severe challenges in the oil sector. Above all, Nigeria has to increase its capital to promote the rapid development of its tourism industry and create the enabling environment for foreign investment in the sector.

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