Angela Merkel, who is a German Chancellor, arrived Nigeria on Friday morning and was received by President Muhammadu Buhari in Abuja.
Merkel’s visit to Nigeria marks the final part of of her three-day trip to West Africa countries: Senegal, Ghana and Nigeria with a focus on strengthening economic development and containing illegal migration.
Prior to her arrival, Nigerian Ambassador to Germany, Yusuf Tuggar said Nigeria’s strong economic relations with Germany over the years necessitated her visit. Tuggar noted that security, particularly in the Northeast, would feature in the discussion between the leaders of the two countries.
“We need support to address security issues, particularly in the North Eastern part of Nigeria. As people are returning to their villages and towns and begin to normalise their means of livelihood, which is mostly farming and trading, there is a need for global support to rebuild communities,” Tuggar said.
“But one of the major challenges in recent times has been how to attract German medium-size businesses to invest in Nigeria. The backbone of the German economy is essentially made up of medium-size, family-owned businesses. There are quite concerns about how to de-risk their investments.”
According to Tuggar, this sort of step requires cooperation and support by both governments to facilitate the investment and minimise risk.
“This, of course, fits into Nigeria’s Economic Recovery and Growth Plan and the Presidential Enabling Business Council. On the German side, they know the importance of these medium-size companies and they try to support them and see that they take an increasing role in a globalised world.”
The ambassador disclosed that some business persons on Ms Merkel’s entourage would sign agreements with some Nigerian companies.
“At the moment, the German Government is also doing everything to push out their small and medium- scale businesses to take their place in an increasingly globalised world,”
“Nigeria wants to take advantage of the areas Germany has comparative advantage. Some German companies are interested in Nigerian agriculture sector. This is about how to strengthen our agricultural sector to create prosperity for Nigerians, especially, for young people.”