President Muhammadu Buhari will depart for China today to participate in the 7th Summit of the Forum on China-Africa Cooperation (FOCAC) scheduled to hold September 3 – 4, 2018 in Beijing.

The president’s first engagement in Beijing, according to a statement by his Senior Special Assistant on Media and Publicity, Garba Shehu, will be an interactive session with the Nigerian Community in China at the Nigerian Embassy.

Before the formal opening of the FOCAC Summit, Buhari, as current Chair of ECOWAS, is expected to deliver remarks at the High-Level Dialogue between Chinese and African leaders, business representatives and African entrepreneurs.

The Nigerian president is scheduled to join President Jinping and other African leaders for the opening and roundtable sessions of the 2018 FOCAC Beijing Summit under the theme: “Towards an even Stronger China-Africa Community with a shared Future.”

After the FOCAC Summit, President Buhari will hold bilateral meetings with President Xi Jinping and Prime Minister Li Keqiang to discuss infrastructure financing for strategic projects in Nigeria and the upgrading of Nigeria-China relations.

The president will also assess the progress made so far in Chinese interventions in Nigeria’s key priority infrastructure projects, particularly on-going projects in the railway and power sectors.

It said since the last FOCAC VI Summit held in Johannesburg, South Africa in December 2015 – the first attended by the Nigerian leader – and his successful State visit to China in April 2016, the current administration has pushed forward practical cooperation with China in the areas of infrastructure construction, trade, investments, finance, power, agriculture, education cooperation, among others.

President Buhari will be accompanied to Beijing by his wife, Aisha, who is scheduled to participate in a Spouses’ Programme on China-Africa at the Great Hall of the People, under the theme, “Joining Hands for a Future of AIDS.”

Also on the President’s entourage are Governors Mohammed Abdullahi Abubakar (Bauchi), Akinwunmi Ambode (Lagos), Mohammed Badaru Abubakar (Jigawa) and Rochas Okorocha (Imo).

Others are Senators Abdullahi Adamu (Nasarawa), George Akume (Benue), Godswill Akpabio (Akwa Ibom), and Aliyu Wamakko (Sokoto).

Also accompanying the president are: Ministers Geoffrey Onyeama (Foreign Affairs), Rotimi Amaechi (Transport), Babatunde Fashola (Power, Works and Housing), Muhammad Bello (FCT), Okechukwu Enelamah (Industry, Trade and Investment), Udoma Udo Udoma (Budget and National Planning), Suleiman Adamu (Water Resources); Ibe Kachikwu (State, Petroleum Resources), and Hadi Sirika (State, Aviation).

Others are the National Security Adviser, Babagana Monguno; the Director General, National Intelligence Agency, Ahmed Abubakar; and the Group Managing Director, NNPC, Maikanti Baru.

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