Spurring co-operation and investment with Nigeria

21:38 | 04/12/2017
Agricultural products, cashew nuts, services, construction, and consumer goods are among Vietnam’s potential export items to Nigeria and the larger African market in the coming time.
Business and investment forums such as this are opportunities to intensify trade ties

Vietnam has been exporting to Nigeria since 1995 and importing since 1998. As one of the largest markets in Africa, Nigeria has a great demand for imports of goods, many of which are Vietnam’s export strengths. Vietnam is looking to increase the import of potential goods from Nigeria, especially raw materials for export.

The bilateral co-operation between the two countries has witnessed rapid development within the framework of Vietnam’s international economic integration, especially through bilateral trade and the export-import of goods and services.

Nigeria is becoming a potential commercial and investment partner of Vietnam with the average two-way turnover of the past five years reaching more than $250 million, according to Vietnam Chamber of Commerce and Industry (VCCI).

The main export items of Vietnam to Nigeria are transportation and spare parts, computers, and electronics supplies, while Vietnam’s imports include raw cashew nuts, cotton fibre, and wood. In addition, the two sides have great potential for co-operation in the fields of agriculture, processing agricultural products, garment, footwear, mining, and building materials production.

Vietnam is entering a new development period in 2016-2020 with stable macroeconomic conditions, higher growth, and better controlled inflation. Vietnam’s trade turnover hit $359 billion in 2016, signifying an average increase of nearly 20 per cent per year during the past 20 years. Vietnam is also an attractive destination for foreign investors.

Doan Duy Khuong, deputy chairman of VCCI, and Oye Akinsemoyin, chairman of NVCCI (middle)

At the Nigeria-Vietnam Business and Investment Forum today, Oye Akinsemoyin, chairman of the Nigeria Chamber of Commerce and Industry (NVCCI), said that forums like this create opportunities for the businesses of the two countries to improve bilateral relationships and maximise their benefits. Nigeria needs support and Vietnam’s experience in agricultural production and processing as well as high-quality human resources development.

“The two sides should collaborate and assist each other to boost the export of raw materials, agricultural processing, contributing to the GDP growth of both countries. This is the best time for bilateral co-operation,” emphasised Akinsemoyin.

Pham Anh Tuan, Vietnamese Ambassador to Nigeria, highly appreciated Nigerian businesses’ exploring and looking for investment opportunities in Vietnam. With the sizeable populations of the two countries (100 million in Vietnam and 200 million in Nigeria), there are abundant opportunities for business co-operation and trade.

Viettel Group has recently sent professional delegations to explore and research the Nigerian market and discover potential co-operation opportunities to deploy its telecommunication network in the upcoming time.

According to Fransis Efeduma, Nigerian Ambassador to Vietnam, apart from cashew nuts, there are many areas where the two countries hold complementary strengths to fuel co-operation. Nigeria wants to increase co-operation ties, seizing opportunities in Vietnam to spur localisation in Nigeria.

Regarding difficulties and shortcomings, Doan Duy Khuong, deputy chairman of VCCI, said that geographic distance, language, culture, payment methods, and legal frameworks are all barriers for co-operation and investment between the two countries. These issues are exacerbated by Nigeria’s complicated banking system, political instability, and high rates of inflation.

Thereby, they need to find new forms of co-operation related to e-commerce to overcome the challenges. VCCI is also building up a business forum between Vietnam and Africa and Middle Eastern countries to create opportunities for Vietnamese businesses to access emerging markets like Nigeria.

About 20 Nigerian businesses attended today’s forum, hailing from various fields of operation, from agriculture through gas and oil to maritime transport.

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