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Buhari lobbies UK to invest in Nigeria

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Nigeria President Muhammadu Buhari is soliciting a better engagement with the United Kingdom (UK) government to invest in Nigeria for better employment opportunities for the country’s highly-skilled youths.

“For my country, greater UK engagement in its economy would bring jobs to under-tapped sectors, such as agriculture and manufacturing,” Buhari said in an opinion published in The Guardian ahead of the UK-Africa Investment Summit in London.

“Millions of highly skilled, English-speaking but underemployed young people, are eager to work but without the opportunities that foreign investment can bring to create jobs and build businesses.”

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Buhari said Nigeria’s relationship with the UK has been longstanding with the 2018 bi-lateral security pact signed between both countries.

He noted that the relationship with the UK in the economy has always defined by Britain’s membership of the European Union, which it is opting out of. Buhari said he awaits the outcome of the UK’s plans after the EU exit.

The Nigeria president, however, expressed optimism that a new free trade agreement will present new opportunities for both countries, where his country has a great deal to offer.

“Nigeria’s vast natural energy and mineral resources, unbarred through the ending of customs barriers, could help supply growth for companies in all corners of the UK. Greater access would also be forthcoming to one of the world’s fastest expanding groups of consumers – the Nigerian middle classes,” Buhari said.

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Buhari urged the two Commonwealth countries- Nigeria and the UK with other members to deliver more collectively to become a multilateral-free trade zone.

“Yet without any of us needing to relinquish these ties, we can work together to minimise – consistent with respective memberships – as far as possible many of the tariffs and barriers on commodities, products and services,” Buhari said.

Buhari asked the countries to “work together from this common platform to better align regulations on investment, certification and trade.”


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