President Mahamadou Issoufou of Niger Republic has visited the headquarters of Alibaba in Hangzhou in East China to strike a deal.
Accompanied by the Alibaba CEO, Daniel Zhang, the president reports that Niger wholeheartedly looks forward to cooperating with Alibaba Group Holding.
The cooperation is not only to boost agricultural product exports with the help of e-commerce but also to take part in training programs provided by the company.
Issoufou was introduced by staff to Alibaba’s e-commerce and business highlights.
He also listened to a Chinese song played by Alibaba’s voice-activated Tmall Genie, a popular smart home device in Chinese households.
“This display tour, as well as the introduction of Alibaba executives, strengthened our determination to cooperate with Alibaba.
“We know that Rwanda is one of Alibaba’s partners in Africa. We also know that a delegation from Togo will soon take training courses from Alibaba. We want to be the third African country to be a partner with Alibaba,” he said.
He sought a contact among Alibaba’s executive members to register for the training classes and discuss cooperation.
In January, Rwanda sent a delegation of government officials to take training courses at Alibaba’s headquarters. Alibaba is also helping the country sell coffee on Alibaba’s renowned Tmall platform.
Issoufou said he hopes Alibaba’s e-commerce platforms can help Niger export more of its specialized agricultural products, like onions, to China.
China mostly imports agricultural products and uranium from Niger, while exporting items like fabrics, mechanical and electrical products, Song Wei, an associate research fellow at the Chinese Academy of International Trade and Economic Cooperation who focuses on the study of Africa.
In the first four months this year, China’s US dollar-denominated trade with Niger surged by 41.6 percent on a yearly basis, with exports increasing by 59.9 percent on a yearly basis and imports from Niger rising by 34.5 percent, customs data showed.
“Trade between Niger and China is growing as collaboration penetrates deeper.