THE POLITICAL ECONOMY OF NIGERIA-CHINA RELATIONS (1999 – 2013)
That China has positioned itself as a country to reckon with in today’s world economy is no longer contestable. This reflects in the influx of economic activities from various foreign investors who are attracted to the existence of a market for their products and services in the over one (1) billion populated country (Ayantunji & Ayodele, 2009). The study examines the Political Economy of Nigeria-China Relations (1999-2013). The analysis of China’s relations with Africa has often been generalized, yet these relations vary considerably across the continent, suggesting the need for greater attention to the specificities of each country. Thus, the study appraises the impact of diplomatic and economic relations on the political economy of Nigeria and China. The study predicates its investigations on dependency theory as the method of analysis, while method of data collection was qualitative in nature. Data collected were analyzed using qualitative descriptive analysis. The study notes, among others, that the Chinese manufacturing operations contribute to the country’s GDP but offer tough competition for local producers. Exports to China might also boost the bottom line, as Nigerian suppliers find a new market for their goods, but here too, the results are mixed. Imports from China far outstrip exports, creating a large trade deficit and flooding the market with low-tech manufactured goods that might otherwise be produced domestically. The study argues that there is a huge imbalance yawning gap in trade between Nigeria and China and a need to improve more on the diplomatic relations between both countries. The study recommends that Nigeria’s first priority lies in developing the capacity to better manage its own policies toward China’s engagement. Nigeria needs to realize that China’s engagement gives it a unique opportunity to significantly expand its development and articulate a comprehensive strategy that addresses its long-term needs.