The Executive Secretary of the Nigerian Investment Promotion Commission (NIPC), Hajiya Saratu Umar, has reiterated the federal government's effort to partner with the Japanese government to explore areas of business partnerships to deepen the investment drive of both countries.
Saratu stated this yesterday when the Japanese Ambassador to Nigeria, Matsunnaga Kazuyoshi, paid a courtesy visit to her office.
Speaking on the rationale behind the visit, the Japanese ambassador noted that Nigeria has been a strategic business partner as the value of trade volume between the two countries now stands at $10 billion annually with expectations that the figure will rise in the coming years.
He said: "Nigeria's trade volume with Japan has reached 10 billion dollars, and it is growing, which is why we are visiting to reiterate our partnerships and build on it especially after the recently held Nigeria Japan business forum which provided a very good opportunity to forward business relationships.
"We also had an international trade meeting in Lagos last year where the Japanese private sector was present. Also in January, we had a Nigeria-Japan business forum where the private sector participated and it provided opportunities for matchmaking and social issues.
He also raised concerns on the continuity of business policies and trade relationships between both parties, especially as a new administration beckons in a few months.
Matsunnaga added that TICAD 9 in 2025 in Japan will be a big opportunity for Nigeria and Japan to advance business causes.
Responding, the NIPC ES said, "The federal government through the investment masterplan is working to attract more investments by bringing Japanese companies like Mitsubishi and others to assemble and manufacture their vehicles in Nigeria as a way to conserve foreign exchange."
She added that NIPC is "Engaging the central bank and other agencies of government to deal with the issues in the short term as the commission has a bigger plan to address some investment challenges in the national investment promotion master plan as Nigeria has a lot of potential waiting for investors to tap.