- S’African Envoy Seeks Increased Bilateral Trade With Nigeria
The Consul-General, South African High Commission in Nigeria, Mr. Darkey Africa, has stated that the trade environment is changing, necessitating cooperation among African nations to facilitate trade and sustainable development.
Africa stated this during the 2017 edition of the South African Trade Mission to Nigeria, an annual event organised by Wesgro and the Nigerian Investment Promotion Council to attract foreign direct investment from South Africa into Nigeria and facilitate entry into South African business environment for interested Nigerian investors.
He said, “Africa needs to rely on itself to make sure that it can develop both economically. We should be able to develop bilateral partnerships that are mutually beneficial to both countries.
“This trade mission will enable us to exchange views, expertise and experiences that will aid the development of Nigeria and South Africa.”
One of the organisers of the trade mission, David Bebiem, said he brought South African business owners in contact with their Nigerian counterparts.
He disclosed that business owners from two provinces, Cape Town and Eastern Cape, travelled to Nigeria for the three-day event aimed at fostering collaboration and promotion of business among participants.
Bebiem said, in the past seven years that the event has held in Nigeria, there had been an increase in number of South African companies in the country, adding that there were plans to take Nigerian business owners to South Africa on a similar mission.
The Head, Africa, International Trade and Development, Wesgro, Mr. Michael Gamwo, said that about 20 companies attended the event from different sectors in South Africa.
He, however, pointed out that the major barrier to trade among African nations was the visa processing while the barriers in Nigeria were infrastructure and high cost of renting space.
“But Nigeria is a big and very rewarding market. We try to get companies to understand that a barrier doesn’t mean you need to stop. It is just to be aware of, so that you can be better prepared because at the end of the day, Nigeria is a big market,” he stated.