The Nigerian-British Chamber of Commerce (NBCC) on Thursday, July 23, 2020, hosted its Opportunity Nigeria Conference. In his welcome speech, the President and Chairman of Council of the NBCC, Mr Kayode Falowo stated that the theme ‘‘Nigeria- Gateway to Emerging African Markets’’ was apt given the economic realities in Nigeria today, and her relationship with the UK and other countries in the world. The Conference would have been held in the UK as part of the Chamber’s 2020 Annual Trade Mission activities, to promote Trade & Investment between Nigeria & Britain.
The Conference keynote address was delivered by Otunba Adeniyi Adebayo, Minister of Industry,Trade & Investment. There were goodwill messages from Nigeria High Commissioner to United Kingdom, Ambassador George Oguntade & British Deputy High Commissioner to Nigeria, Ms Harriet Thompson. Also speaking at the event were Ms Emma Wade-Smith, OBE, Her Majesty’s Trade Commissioner for Africa; Dr Doyin Salami, Chairman, Presidential Economic Advisory Council; Mr Sarmad Lone, Regional Head of Global Banking Africa & Middle East, Standard Chartered Bank; Ms Yewande Sadiku, Executive Secretary, Nigerian Investment Promotion Commission (NIPC), with Ms Chantele Carrington, COO, PWC UK, Africa Business Group moderating the panel discussion.
In his keynote address, Otunba Adeniyi Adebayo highlighted the Federal Government’s commitment to improving Nigeria’s business environment and the initiatives undertaken to position Nigeria as the investment destination of choice in Africa. Speaking on investment opportunities, the Minister stated that: ‘…our national priority remains expanding local production and significantly improving aftercare services for strategic investors. Our efforts are therefore focused on implementing consistent and predictable policies to diversify the economy and mitigate investor uncertainty…’’
Speaking on the theme of the conference, Ms Wade-Smith’s perspective is that the sheer scale, dynamism seen across the country, the ambitions and aspirations of the government to the reforms to keep propelling the economy forward, make the country continue to be competitive to the crown of the gateway to Africa. She commented that there is still a lot of untapped potential that exist, and both the UK and Nigeria governments are committed to see increase in the value of trade and investment in both directions so that the economy and people create and sustain even more jobs.
For over 40 years, the Nigeria-British Chamber of Commerce has been fostering increased trade & investment between Nigeria & Britain. The NBCC is an international affiliate of the British Chamber of Commerce, BCC, which grants its members access to a network of 53 Chambers of Commerce across the British Commonwealth