Nigeria and China have taken another dimension in their diplomatic relations as both countries promote cultural harmony and tourism using varied cuisines by both countries.
Indications to this development emerged during the 2022 World Sustainable Gastronomy Day, a day set aside by the United Nations to acknowledge the importance of global cuisines in fostering unity.
Mr Li Xuda, cultural counsellor, Chinese Embassy in Nigeria said that food plays an important part in promoting culture and fostering harmony in cultural diversity.
The theme for this year’s event in Nigeria is “Placing Nigerian food on the international map” which was organised in Abuja by the National Institute for Hospitality and Tourism (NIHOTOUR).
Li said further that “Food is an important part of the culture and through promoting food culture we can really promote the culture in diversity and I think you know China, we pay attention to the concept of harmony.
“We always say harmony in diversity and through this way we can push forward our two countries cooperation in many fields including the culture field and tourism.
“This event is a good initiative because from this, they are placing Nigerian food on the international map.
“And through this, we can promote Nigerian culture throughout the world and let more people know more about Nigeria and its unique culture,” Li said.
The Chinese envoy commended the NIHOTOUR for organising the event which he said had made a positive impact.
He said in 2022, the Chinese Embassy in collaboration with NIHOTOUR and the Arts and Culture department of the Federal Capital Territory jointly hosted the 2021 Gastronomy Day celebration.
Ms Patricia Gomez, first secretary, Embassy of Spain in Nigeria said that as basic as food seems, it goes a long way in strengthening cultural, human and bilateral relations among countries.
She said “Food is something very basic, we have food everyday and we do not realise how much it represents our countries, of the different parts of very diverse countries like Nigeria and Spain.
“Sometimes, we do not have to go very far to do a lot of sophisticated things to strengthen our relationship.
“Only one thing like food can make you realize how close or how many things you can understand about the other country.
“Days like this are very important days to foster relationships, to understand different cultures and different parts of our countries.”