UK minister seeks to strengthen trade ties with Nigeria during visit

The UK Minister for Business and Trade, Kemi Badenoch, has embarked on a three-day visit to Nigeria, where she will meet with government officials and business leaders to explore ways to deepen the trade relationship between the two countries.

The UK and Nigeria have a long-standing and strategic partnership, based on shared values, interests, and history. The two countries cooperate on various issues, such as security, education, health, and governance. The two countries also have strong trade and investment links, with the UK being Nigeria’s second-largest trading partner and the largest foreign investor in Nigeria.

According to the UK Department for International Trade, the bilateral trade between the UK and Nigeria was worth £4.2 billion ($5.8 billion) in 2020, an increase of 7.3% from 2019. The UK exports to Nigeria include machinery, vehicles, pharmaceuticals, and beverages, while Nigeria exports to the UK include crude oil, cocoa, rubber, and leather.

The UK is also committed to supporting Nigeria’s economic development and diversification, through various initiatives and programmes, such as the UK-Nigeria Economic Development Forum, the UK-Africa Investment Summit, and the UK Prosperity Fund.

A visit to boost trade and investment opportunities

The visit by the UK Minister for Business and Trade, Kemi Badenoch, who is of Nigerian descent, is aimed at boosting the trade and investment opportunities between the two countries, and unlocking new areas of cooperation and collaboration. During her visit, the minister will hold talks with her Nigerian counterparts and other key government officials, such as the Minister of Industry, Trade and Investment, Niyi Adebayo, the Minister of Finance, Budget and National Planning, Zainab Ahmed, and the Governor of the Central Bank of Nigeria, Godwin Emefiele.

The minister will also meet with British and Nigerian business leaders and investors, and visit some of the UK-supported projects and programmes in Nigeria, such as the Solar Nigeria Programme, which provides affordable and reliable solar power to rural communities, and the Lagos Innovation Programme, which supports start-ups and entrepreneurs in the tech sector.

The minister will also launch the UK-Nigeria Tech Hub, which is a platform that connects and supports tech entrepreneurs and innovators in both countries, and fosters collaboration and innovation in areas such as fintech, agritech, healthtech, and edutech.

A vision for a stronger and deeper trade relationship

The UK Minister for Business and Trade, Kemi Badenoch, said she was delighted to visit Nigeria, and to strengthen the trade relationship between the two countries. She said: “Nigeria is one of the UK’s most important partners in Africa, and we have a shared vision for a prosperous, secure, and sustainable future. We are committed to working together to boost trade and investment, create jobs and opportunities, and support Nigeria’s economic recovery and growth.”

The UK High Commissioner to Nigeria, Catriona Laing, said she was pleased to welcome the minister to Nigeria, and to showcase the UK’s support and partnership with Nigeria. She said: “The UK is Nigeria’s second-largest trading partner and the largest foreign investor, and we are keen to deepen and diversify our trade and investment relationship, especially in sectors such as renewable energy, technology, agriculture, and health. We are also proud to support Nigeria’s economic development and diversification, through our various initiatives and programmes, which are making a positive impact on millions of lives and livelihoods.”

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