Nigeria, Japan deepen trade relations
• Set up Japan-Nigeria Business Facilitation Council
Nigerian and Japanese governments have set up the Japan-Nigeria Business Facilitation Council (JNBFC), to further strengthen trade and investment relations between both countries.The Council is co-chaired the Japan envoy to Nigeria, Ambassador Yutaka Kikuta, and Executive Secretary of Nigerian Investment Promotion Commission (NIPC), Ms Yewande Sadiku.
The creation of the JNBCF is the outcome of agreements between President Muhammadu Buhari, and Prime Minister Shinzo Abe of Japan, during the 7th Tokyo International Conference for African Development (TICAD 7) that took place in Japan, in August, this year. Nigeria’s representatives on the Council include the Ministries of Foreign Affairs, and Industry, Trade and Investment; Nigerian Investment Promotion Commission (NIPC); National Agency for Food and Drug Administration and Control (NAFDAC); Standards Organisation of Nigeria (SON); Nigerian Export Promotion Council (NEPC); the Federal Inland Revenue Service (FIRS); and the Abuja Chamber of Commerce & Industry.
Japan is represented by the Japan External Trade Organisation (JETRO), Japan International Corporation Agency and the Embassy of Japan in Nigeria.
At the formal inauguration, weekend, in Abuja, the Minister of Industry, Trade and Investment, Adeniyi Adebayo, said the Council would encourage more Japanese companies to make Nigeria their investment destination hub for West and Central Africa.Represented by the Permanent Secretary, Sunday Edet Akpan, the Minister said he has been following the growing interest in Nigeria by Japanese companies.
Also Commenting, Ambassador Kikuta explained that the Council is a symbol of collaboration for a brighter future of economic cooperation between both countries, and should strengthen bilateral relations between them.While pledging to put in his best as co-Chair, Kikuta also expressed high hopes that the Council would facilitate prospective and existing Japanese investors’ interest in Nigeria.In her remarks the NIPC Executive Secretary, Yewande Sadiku, revealed that Japan is one of the 20 countries identified by the Commission as strategically important to Nigeria for investment promotion.
Sadiku noted that the Council’s work will proactively attract and retain Japanese investments, along with its culture of quality, attention to detail and strong work ethics.She used the occasion to solicit for the support of all the government agencies in the Council to work with NIPC to address investors’ issues as they arise, even as she pledged Nigeria’s support to work with her Japanese counterpart in delivering the objectives of the Council.