Nigeria and India will partner to implement strategies to enhance the $12 billion annual bilateral trade between both countries in a way that would focus on investment.
The Minister of Industry, Trade and Investment, Dr. Okechukwu Enelamah, who received the Indian High Commissioner to Nigeria, Mr. Shri Abhav Thakur, in his office, was quoted in a statement to have lauded the relationship between Nigeria and India.
In the statement, which was signed by the Strategy and Communications Adviser to the Minister, Mr. Bisi Daniels, Enelamah said it had become necessary to expand the relationship between both countries beyond trade for increased investment.
Enelamah recalled the fundamental co-operation between both countries and their common heritage in the Commonwealth of Nations. He said Nigeria was restructuring her economy and bilateral relationships should also reflect the effort.
The Minister welcomed the envoy’s interest in Project Mine, a new initiative by Nigeria to develop world-class special economic zones to position Nigeria as the pre-eminent manufacturing hub in sub-Saharan Africa, and a major exporter of made in Nigeria goods and services regionally and globally.
To implement the initiative, the Nigerian government signed investment agreements with three Development Finance Institutions – Afreximbank, Bank of Industry and the Nigeria Sovereign Investment Authority (NSIA).
Thakur expressed interest in the project and requested a formal briefing to enable him sell the opportunities to Indian investors. He congratulated the Minister for the electoral victory of President Muhammadu Buhari and his government.
The High Commissioner stated that Nigeria and India are important trade partners and expressed the need to grow the partnership. He noted that his country was looking forward to the Joint Trade Committee meeting holding in India in April.
In 2017, both countries agreed to establish the Committee at the level of Commerce Secretary from the Indian side and Permanent Secretary from the Nigerian side to review the ongoing bilateral trade and commercial relations.