Nigeria keen to bolster trade ties with Pakistan
Nigeria is keen to promote trade and economic relations with Pakistan as both countries have great potential to push bilateral trade in many areas for achieving mutually beneficial outcomes, said Nigerian High Commissioner to Pakistan Muhammed Bello Abiuye. During his meeting with the business community at the Islamabad Chamber of Commerce and Industry (ICCI), he highlighted that agricultural equipment, information technology, pharmaceutical, tourism and textile as potential areas of cooperation between Nigeria and Pakistan. The envoy said that Nigeria was allowing business e-visa on arrival for Pakistani citizens and emphasised that Pakistan should also streamline its visa policy for Nigerian businessmen, which would help to improve bilateral trade ties.
Abiuye added that Pakistan and Nigeria should focus on operating direct flights and establishing strong air linkages to ramp up trade and exports. He stressed that the establishment of banking channels between the two countries was a key requirement to facilitate business transactions. Highlighting the role of Indian companies, the high commissioner stated that Indian firms had a significant presence in Nigeria and emphasised that Pakistan should also work on strategies to achieve better penetration into the African nation’s market. Speaking on the occasion, ICCI President Sardar Yasir Ilyas Khan said that Pakistan-Nigeria bilateral trade in 2020 was around $146 million, which was negligible given the huge market size of both countries. He said that Pakistan could export many products to Nigeria which included pharmaceuticals, textiles, rice, sports goods, IT products and services, surgical instruments, leather products, electronic gadgets and equipment, fruits and vegetables at competitive prices and stressed that Nigeria should focus on increasing imports from Pakistan.