Nigeria offers joint venture opportunities

High commissioner asks businessmen to tap potential.

Imran Rana December 07, 2012

FAISALABAD: Nigeria offers great business prospects and joint venture opportunities in various sectors that Pakistan’s businessmen should tap, says Pakistan’s High Commissioner to Nigeria Lieutenant General (retd) Ashraf Saleem.

Speaking to the executive committee members and other businessmen at the Faisalabad Chamber of Commerce and Industry on Friday, Saleem said Pakistan possessed great potential to increase exports of textile, agriculture and other products to Nigeria, a country rich in resources and a major economy in the African continent that caters to other African markets.

With prospects bright for export of wheat, sugar, rice, fabrics and textile, supported by a hard-working workforce, he said Pakistan could enhance trade with Nigeria manifold. Entry into the Nigerian market would mean access to other countries in western and central Africa, he said.

Nigeria is a member of the Organisation of Petroleum Exporting Countries (OPEC) and Developing Eight (D-8) and holds huge gas reserves of 119 trillion cubic feet. Pakistani businessmen could enter into joint ventures in fertiliser and liquefied natural gas (LNG) projects and could set up oil refineries there, he said.

Opportunities also exist for cooperation in the areas of agriculture and agri-implements and even retail chains of textile and other Pakistani manufacturers can be opened there.

Saleem particularly mentioned the goodwill created by Pakistan Army deployed under the UN peace mission in Nigeria, saying it was time to take benefit of the goodwill.

Speaking on the occasion, FCCI President Zahid Aslam said Pakistan and Nigeria had bigger size economies, but trade volume between the two was limited to only $40 million in 2011.

He suggested that with continuous economic downturn in the US and western markets, Pakistani businessmen should gradually shift their focus to such potential markets as Nigeria.

He called for frequent exchange of trade delegations, identifying textile, garment, finished and semi-finished products for trade and organising single-country exhibition in Nigeria.

Published in The Express Tribune, December 8th, 2012.


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