Abuja, Jan. 24, 2024: Some Ministers and Governors of India and Nigeria have respectively called for deeper cooperation between India and Nigeria to sustain trade growth between the two countries.
The ministers and governors made the call at the one-day India trade mission to Nigeria/Nigeria-India business forum in Abuja.
The forum with the theme: “Expanding trade and investment opportunities between Nigeria and India” was organised by Nigeria India Business Council (NIBC) through collaboration withNigerian Association of Chambers of Commerce, Industry, Mines and Agriculture (NACCIMA).
India’s External Affairs Minister Dr Subrahmanyam Jaishankar said, “The forum is designed to reflect what can be done to achieve great feats between the two countries.
“Nigeria is our premier economic partner, I will also urge you to look at such potential; our primary responsibility is to improve our enabling environment.
“To look at problems bounding trade relations, ensure trade settlement and that such trade challenges are solved.”
Nigeria’s Minister of Foreign Affairs, Amb. Yusuf Tuggar, represented by Amb. Bolaji Akinremi, Director of Trade and Economic Relations in the ministry promised to nurture NIBC to greater heights.
Tuggar said, “We should make NIBC event centered, we should have a broad-based structure that carry strong organisation and build on the Council’s leadership.
“To promote collaboration instead of competition; we must know the essence of the NIBC collaboration is to assist government and not in any ways oppose government.”
Mrs Doris Uzoka-Anite, the Minister of Industry, Trade and Investment commended Nigeria-India relationship to have been built on mutual friendship.
“Today’s forum is a testament to the progress built on President Bola Tinubu’s effort at the G-20 summit held in September, 2023 in New-Delhi, India.
“The effort resulted in India pledge of 14billion USD for investment in NIGERI economy,” she said.
The Minister of Marine and Blue Economy, Mr Adegboyega Oyetola, described Nigeria as a coastal country that stretch over 857km along the Atlantic Ocean.
“This serves as natural hub for shipping in the continent; India is crucial trade partner Nigeria and ties between both countries can be strengthened through closer economic Atlantic-structure and construction of deep-seaports.
“Also through promotion of blue economy investment, development of tourism facilities, export processing terminals and passengers transport services,” he said.
The Governor of Nasarawa, Abdullahi Sule, said there is no greater time for Nigeria and India to have come together than now under the renewed hope regime.
“Nigeria and India have a lot in common, in terms of population and natural resources, India has done so much Nigeria can learn from.
“India has done so well in the area of agriculture and this is one aspect Nigerian can learn from,” Sule said.
Inuwa Yahaya, the Gombe state governor said “The NIBC is an idea that is well sustained and we also want to key-in into the initiative, because of our own strategic endowment.
“We have abundant natural resources, investor-friendly business climate, we are number one cotton producer and ranked number five in terms of ease of doing business in the country.”
Dr Emeka Offor, President of NIBC Nigeria said, “We are very optimistic that the business climate in Nigeria is ready to attract investment.
“NIBC is committed to keeping the momentum and provide measures for implementing various project that will deepen Nigeria-India relations.”
Meanwhile, the President of NACCIMA, Mr Dele Oye said, “India and Nigeria share deep bilateral relations and cultural respect, same democratic values and common vision towards economic growth.”
NIBC seeks to attract investment and creat jobs to increase level of trade between the two countries.