India-Nigeria hold Foreign Office Consultations

Sep 30: The Second round of Foreign Office Consultations (FOC) between India and Nigeria was held on 29 September 2022 in New Delhi. The FOC was chaired by Shri Sevala Naik Mude, JS (C&WA), Ministry of External Affairs and Amb. Mustapha Tunde Mukaila, Director Regions, Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Nigeria.

The visiting Nigerian delegation was led by H.E. Mr. Gabriel Aduda, Permanent Secretary, Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Nigeria. Permanent Secretary Aduda met Secretary (ER), Shri Dammu Ravi and both discussed various ways and means to further strengthen the mutifaceted relations that exists between the two countries.

During the FOC, both the sides reviewed the entire gamut of bilateral relations covering political, economic & commercial investment, defence & security, development partnership, capacity building, cultural and consular matters. Both sides also discussed ways to further strengthen the close bilateral ties between India and Nigeria. The two sides also exchanged views on regional and global issues of mutual interest and agreed to enhance their cooperation in the multilateral fora.

Relations between India and Nigeria have traditionally been warm and are based on shared historical ties, values of democracy and vision. There have been regular visits taking place from both sides. Defence cooperation between the two countries has been nurtured over the years, and India had helped Nigeria in setting up their Defence Academy. As part of capacity building under ITEC, India offers over 250 slots annually which are being utilised optimally. Under this framework, several Nigerian senior military officers were trained in India, including two former Presidents and the present incumbent President H.E. Mr. Mohammadu Buhari.

The bilateral trade and Indian investment in Nigeria have been growing steadily. The bilateral trade during 2021-22 was US$14.95 bn, with India importing oil to the tune of US$10 bn. India is one of the largest investors in Nigeria. Indian investment in Nigeria is estimated at approximately US$ 19.3 billion. More than 135 Indian companies are currently operating in Nigeria in diverse fields such as pharmaceuticals, engineering goods, electrical machinery and equipment, plastics, chemicals, etc. Both sides exchanged views on how to deepen trade links through use of national currencies, Development Projects and Institution building in a manner that would be mutually beneficial. India is preferred destination for higher education and medical tourism to Nigerians. Over 50,000 Indian professionals are working in Nigeria contributing significantly to the economy of Nigeria.

The talks were held in a friendly and cordial atmosphere. Both sides agreed to hold the next consultations at Abuja (Nigeria) at a mutually convenient date.

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