France, Nige­ria trade vol­ume tops 1.8 bil­lion eu­ros

The Guardian (Nigeria) - - BUSINESS - By Vic­tor Gbone­gun

THE Eco­nomic Coun­selor of France in Nige­ria, Fran­cis Wid­mer, yes­ter­day, said the trade vol­ume be­tween the two coun­tries has ex­ceeded 1.8 bil­lion eu­ros in the first quar­ter of 2017.

Pledg­ing that there are plans to fur­ther in­crease the trend­ing num­bers be­fore the end of the year, he dis­closed that the sub­sist­ing sta­tis­tics is a pro­gres­sion of about 5.5 per cent growth in com­pared to 2016.

He noted that the econ­omy in 2016 was not a good one, stress­ing that very soon a 40-man del­e­ga­tion of busi­ness­men would be vis­it­ing Nige­ria to fur­ther ex­plore busi­ness op­por­tu­ni­ties in en­ergy, eco­nomic, se­cu­rity, cul­tural, in­fra­struc­ture, agri­cul­ture and oil and gas.

Speak­ing at Press Con­fer­ence or­gan­ised as apart of ac­tiv­i­ties to mark 2017 French Week in La­gos, Wid­mer pointed out that one of the ma­jor chal­lenges hin­der­ing prospec­tive French in­vestors from en­ter­ing Nige­rian mar­ket was their as­sess­ment of un­favourable busi­ness climate in the coun­try.

“The cur­rent re­la­tion­ship is bet­ter than what it was in 2016, when Nige­ria faced strong eco­nomic re­ces­sion and se­cu­rity chal­lenges. We now have a strong net­work of busi­ness in­vestors in Nige­ria, the French De­vel­op­ment Agency, the French/nige­ria Cham­ber of Com­merce and In­dus­try (FNCCI), all in the ef­forts to pro­mote trades and build­mu­tual re­la­tion­ship es­pe­cially in find­ing lo­cal busi­ness part­ners in Nige­ria”, he stated.

The Con­sul Gen­eral of France, Lau­rent Polon­ceaux, said one of the sig­nif­i­cant fea­tures of this year’s French Week is the Eco­nomic Sum­mit, which would gather key busi­ness and gov­ern­men­tal fig­ures from France and Nige­ria with the aim of dis­cussing key is­sues that af­fect the busi­ness climate in Nige­ria.

The event, he stated would pro­duce a com­mu­niqué that would be sent to rel­e­vant gov­ern­ment agen­cies on per­ti­nent is­sues dis­cussed and so­lu­tions pref e r r e d . The fo­cus of this year’s eco­nomic sum­mit is: “The Nige­ria Power Chal­lenge and the Ease of do­ing Busi­ness in Nige­ria”.

The sum­mit is ex­pected to have the Hon­or­able Min­is­ter of Power, Works and Hous­ing, key gov­ern­men­tal fig­ures in the area of power in Nige­ria, The Am­bas­sador of France to Nige­ria/ The Con­sul Gen­eral of the French Con­sulate, key French and Nige­ria busi­ness brands in the power sec­tor, among o th e r s ” .

The Chair­per­son of the French Week Com­mit­tee, Ca­role Boissier said the ac­tiv­i­ties in­clude; the wine Beau­jo­lais Nou­veau (wine tast­ing) which is cel­e­brated all over the world with the ob­jec­tive to un­veil the new set of wines pro­duced in France, In­ter­ac­tive ses­sion with key French brands with the Pres­i­dent of the Nige­rian Stock Ex­change for the pur­pose of com­pany list­ing and the sound­ing cer­e­mony of the close of trade by the Con­sul Gen­eral of France.

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