Nigeria is leading in a new trade and commerce cooperation between African countries and Israel, which will see small and medium scale enterprises (SMEs) based in Africa benefit from the economic competencies of Israel.
According to the facilitators of the partnership, the Africa Leadership Summit (ALS), a new platform, the Africa-Israel Chamber of Commerce (AICC) was inaugurated recently in Abuja to oversee the planned economic relationship between the continent and Israel.
The Convener of ALS, Mr. Olusegun Olanipekun told journalists at a leadership conference where AICC was formally unveiled that AICC would concentrate its efforts
and resources on tapping from Israel key and tested start-up knowledge with which SMEs in Nigeria and other African countries can use to re-invent themselves and grow their profitabilities.
Olanipekun equally noted that other than helping SMEs grow their economic values, the AICC will impact in owners of such ventures, quality and time-tested ethical values which they can apply in relating with and adding values to their business environments.
He explained that platform would not immediately be seeking for big multinationals to come on board, adding that its priorities will be on SMEs which have the capacity to immediately impact on the lives of local citizens.
“The African Leadership Summit (ALS) is about raising the standard of leadership on the continent of Africa and benchmarking ourselves with the best in the world, particularly Israel.
“You know that Israel is the number one start-up nation in the world, it is not only Nigeria or Africa that is learning from them, the whole world is learning from them.
“Israel supplies the highest percentage of patents to the world. Europe buys patents from Israel, America does and we are saying, why do we always buy from America and Europe when we can go directly to the source – Israel,” said Olanipekun.
He further stated: “Israel also imports from other parts of the world but not from Africa because the systems are not in place for that. The ALS is developing application tools like the Africa-Israel Chamber of Commerce (AICC) where people of like mind can meet and connect and a highway of business can be built between the various cities of Africa and Israel.”
He said on the decision to concentrate on SMEs: “Africans have had to wait for investors to come and invest and we observe that the result of that is that profits are repatriated maximally and communities are not developed. But if we partner with a nation like Israel where in 60 years, they have developed their economy and made the desert to blossom like a rose, and developed their communities through their businesses, then we can also learn that it is not enough to have big businesses with big financials but their communities of operation is not developed.”
Olanipekun’s partner, Dr. Ike Neliaku also explained that the AICC will be driven by Nigeria which he said has the capacity to take Africa along the path holistic prosperity if she gets it right.
Neliaku noted that modalities on how the AICC will operate from Nigeria have been designed, with relevant stakeholders already hooked to the platform for prompt delivery of set goal.
Baker Hughes Set to Boost Nigerian Energy Landscape with Refinery Investments and Oil Field Bid Participation
Global oil and gas giant Baker Hughes has expressed its commitment to invest in Nigerian refineries and actively participate in the upcoming bid round for marginal oil fields, according to an announcement by the Federal Government on Sunday.
The announcement followed a meeting between Nigeria’s Minister of State for Petroleum Resources (Oil), Senator Heineken Lokpobiri, and Baker Hughes Chairman/President Lorenzo Simonelli at the 28th United Nations Climate Change Conference in the United Arab Emirates.
During the meeting, Baker Hughes expressed its eagerness to sustain and enhance its investments in Nigeria’s oil and gas industry, particularly showcasing interest in contributing to the country’s refinery sector.
Simonelli emphasized the company’s commitment to supporting Nigeria’s energy transformation agenda.
“Nigeria is a blessed nation with vast potentials and great opportunities in diverse sectors. As a partner with the Federal Government over the years, we are inspired to direct investment in the refinery domain of oil and gas,” said Simonelli.
In response, Minister Lokpobiri welcomed Baker Hughes’ move, highlighting the pivotal role Nigeria plays in the global energy landscape.
He expressed optimism about deepening collaboration and assured the company of the Federal Government’s commitment to creating an enabling environment for investments in the refinery sector.
“I am very happy that you have joined other companies in identifying the great opportunities and government’s favourable policies in our oil and gas sector,” Lokpobiri stated.
Additionally, the Minister’s media aide confirmed Baker Hughes’ interest in participating in Nigeria’s forthcoming marginal oil fields bid round, signaling a broader engagement in the nation’s energy sector.
This move aligns with Nigeria’s efforts to revitalize its oil and gas industry, with ongoing rehabilitation works at the country’s three refineries and the anticipation of increased investments under the new Petroleum Industry Act (PIA).
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