News Investigators/ The government of the People’s Republic of China has agreed to foster its over 30-year- old news exchange agreement with the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN).
The agreement was reached on Tuesday in Abuja, when the new Managing Director of NAN, Buki Ponle paid a courtesy visit to the Chinese Embassy.
This is even as the Chinese embassy pledged to support the agency as it mulls plans to re-establish its office in Beijing, China.
The NAN managing director was received by the Charge D’Affairs of the Embassy, Zhao Yong.
Mr. Ponle reeled out the mutual relationship which NAN had enjoyed with its Chinese Counterpart Xinhua over the years.
He also commended the government of the People’s Republic of China for the support it had given to the NAN over the years in the area of training and provision of equipment.
Mr. Ponle hinted that over the years, NAN had only focused on positive stories about China, adding that under his watch, NAN would focus more on development journalism rather that the era when negative stories made news.
He informed the Chinese representative of the plans by NAN to open an office in Beijing, urging the Chinese government to assist the agency to attain the feat.
He also called on the government of China not to relent in their training and other support to the agency.
Mr. Ponle who recalled a six-week experience in China during his 35-year duty as a staff of the agency, noted that China had tremendously improved since 1995 when he visited.
On his part, while congratulating the new MD on his appointment, Mr. Zhao said that NAN was seen as a member of the Chinese family and was always welcome to the embassy.
He said that Nigeria and China had enjoyed good relationship over the years, noting that the good relationship between both countries was what transcends to the relationship between the news agencies of both countries.
“As you have said, we have excellent relationship between our two media agencies. The bilateral relations between China and Nigeria are the best in history.
“We have achieved more and more results from our co-operations: you can see the airport terminals, the new railways, the roads and also the industrial parks,” he said.
He recalled the support which Nigeria extended to China when it was battling the coronavirus pandemic, pointing out that Nigeria was one of the first countries to reach out to China in solidarity.
He added that as a means of reciprocity, China has also reached out to Nigeria with material support to fight the pandemic.
Mr. Zhao said that the Chinese government had already delivered two batches of materials to Nigeria and disclosed that the third batch was already at the port and would soon be handed over to the Nigerian government.
He pledged continuous cordial relationship between both countries and their news agencies.
The envoy also welcomed the intention of NAN to open an office in China. (NAN)