Nigeria, UK’s trade ties hit £7 billion

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Nigeria, UK’s trade ties hit £7 billion

British High Commissioner in Nigeria, Dr. Richard Montgomery, yesterday, said trade relations between Nigeria and the United Kingdom is currently valued at about £7 billion.

He told the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) in Abuja that both nations signed a new agreement on enhanced trade and investment partnership, and also agreed to work on a range of sectors.

The envoy identified the sectors as agriculture, creative industry, legal, financial services and education.

Montgomery added that trade between the two countries is balanced.

He said having visited many parts of Nigeria, the UK realised that the most populous black nation has at least 3,000 tariff-free products that it could export to the European country.

According to him, the enhanced trade investment partnership, signed in February, is to attract more investments to the agricultural sector.

He said new technologies were coming into the financial services sector to greatly enhance it.

Montgomery noted that the two challenges of doing business in the UK that foreigners needed to take cognisance of were lack of knowledge on how to do business and the standards (non-tariff barriers to trade)

He stated that a facility, called the Growth Gateway run by the Department of Business and Trade, was provided as a source of advice for anyone that intends to export to the UK.

Montgomery submitted that he was optimistic that his country would do more trade in Nigeria because of the “bold reforms” by the Federal Government.

He equally revealed that the number of dependents accompanying students from Nigeria studying in the European nation surged from approximately 1,500 to 52,000 between 2019 and 2022.

The diplomat pointed out that before the Coronavirus pandemic in 2019, there were only about 1,500 dependents from Nigeria in the UK, adding that by 2022, the number increased thirtyfold.

He clarified that only doctorate students are now eligible to bring dependents to his country.

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