- Calabar Carnival Gets a Facelift.…As Cross River State Set to Benefit from China-Africa Development Fund
By Akanimo Kufre
Cross River State Governor, Mr. Ben Ayade on Monday signed a trade partnership agreement with his counterpart in Shaanxi Province in China, Hu Heping, to bolster the injection of capital by Chinese businessmen into the Calabar Carnival, as well as Power and Solid Minerals sectors in Cross River state.
The New Diplomat recalls in May 2016, the China-Africa Development Fund, (CAD Fund) signed a cooperation agreement with Shaanxi government in the capital Xi’an, the first of its kind with a provincial-level partner that aims to boost more investment in the African market.
Governor of Shaanxi province, Mr. Hu Heping at the occasion said the agreement has great significance for companies in Shaanxi, pointing the way for them to go abroad and accelerate their steps into Africa.
According to the agreement, the two sides will establish Shaanxi Africa Industry Development Fund, which will help local companies in financing, project selection and loans for their businesses in Africa.
“As a province with traditional heavy industry, including energy development and manufacturing, Shaanxi has a good number of companies which have an advantage in mining, oil exploration and large-scale equipment manufacturing. All those sectors are needed in Africa,” Hu said at the occasion,” he said.
He added that the China Development Bank, together with CAD Fund with nine years of Africa-related investment, will help companies in Shaanxi gain more information and financial aid in their business expansion in Africa.
Chi Jianxin, chairman of the fund, said there were unprecedented opportunities in China-Africa cooperation at present and that Africa needs the capital it will be providing to finance investments.
The bank allocated $3.2 billion in the CAD Fund for more than 80 projects, from infrastructure to agriculture to energy resources in 35 African countries including Nigeria.
By the end of 2016, the bank hit its target of pooling $5 billion to go into the fund, aiming at further diversifying financial vehicles that facilitate Chinese investment in Africa.
Governor Ayade said after the signing of the agreement that “It is an enormous opportunities for Cross River state to to tap into this fund made available for Africa. We have the assurances of the governor and the people of Shaanxi that the favourable business climate in Cross River state will be leveraged on by Shaanxi.”