As Buhari arrives Beijing, Nigeria and China signs $328m ICT deal

Government officials bid farewell to President Uhuru Kenyatta at JKIA as he departs for Beijing on Friday

Jiang said China-Africa cooperation on industrialization, trade, and infrastructure will be the major topic during the meeting. "Resources for our cooperation are not to be spent on any vanity projects, but in places where they count the most", Xi said.

"Applications for attendance significantly surpassed our expectations", Jiang Zengwei, head of China Council for the Promotion of International Trade, said Friday at a press briefing.

More than 180 major Chinese enterprises and thousands of small and medium enterprises have been established in the country.

The summit aims to build a closer China-Africa community with a shared future, further dovetail China's Belt and Road Initiative with African development, set a new path for a higher level of China-Africa cooperation and deepen people-to-people exchanges.

At a time when President Trump is picking trade fights with the United States' neighbors and allies, the Chinese leader has appeared to relish the opportunity to appear as a popular worldwide statesman and champion of the liberal economic order.

Just in late August, Chinese mining firm Nonferrous China Africa launched production work for its greenfield project in Chambishi town in Zambia's Copperbelt Province, which was hailed by Zambian President Edgar Lungu as an example of serious investment.

"China-Africa cooperation under the BRI is a way to common prosperity that brings benefits to both our peoples".

Nations across Africa are hoping that China's enthusiasm for infrastructure investment will help promote industrialisation on the continent.

In May, African central banks, under the Macroeconomic and Financial Management Institute of Eastern and Southern Africa, (MEFMI) a regional establishment with members including EAC countries supported the introduction of the yuan as a reserve currency.

Also, Minister of Industry, Trade and Investment Okechukwu Enelamah, Minister of Budget and National Planning Udoma Udo Udoma, Minister of Water Resource Suleiman Adamu, Minister of State, Petroleum Resources Ibe Kachikwu and Minister of State, Aviation Hadi Sirika, are in China for the summit.

The rapid growth in Sino-African trade made China Africa's largest trading partner, he said.

The summit will conclude with the signing of a declaration and an action plan, providing guidelines for China-Africa cooperation for the next three years.

The pledge comes on top of a 2015 promise to provide African countries with $60 billion in funding that Xi said had either been delivered or arranged.

China has denied engaging in "debt trap" diplomacy but Xi is likely to use the gathering of African leaders to offer a new round of financing, following a pledge of $60 billion at the previous summit in South Africa three years ago.

However, Aly-Khan Satchu, an economic analyst based in Nairobi, the Kenyan capital, told Al Jazeera there were "real worries about "debt-trap diplomacy" on the African continent".

"We are ready to make a greater contribution to support cultural diversity in the world", he said, citing as a target exchange programme in culture, arts, education sports, think tanks and media, focusing on young people to strengthen the bond between the people of China and Africa. Once signed, the deal would be the first of its kind between China and an African country.

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