Transport deficiencies hamper India-Nigeria trade
On May 11, 2012 · In Business

BY PROVIDENCE OBUH

Lack of Air and Sea Transport system coupled with lack of banking connectivity are obstacles to doing business between Nigeria and India, says Indian High commissioner to Nigeria, Mr. Mahesh Sachdev.

Weakness of an enabling framework, financial constraints and insufficient leveraging of the Diaspora, the envoy further lamented are also major hurdles.

He made the observations at the Kaduna Trade fair in Kaduna State, organised by Kaduna Chamber of Commerce, Industry, Mines and Agriculture (KADCCIMA) saying, “I want to state clearly that some of the problems to businesses between Nigeria and India includes; the lack of air, sea, banking connectivity, financial constraints and weakness of enabling framework.”

He said Nigeria was India’s second largest trading partner with a volume of trade of $16.4 billion in 2011, adding that it invested $5 billion in Nigeria in 2010.

“There are around 35,000 Indians residing in Nigeria and has been participating in different economic activities, ranking second largest employers of labour.”

In the same vein, wife of the Vice President, Amina Namadi Sambo seized the opportunity to call on local and foreign investors to take the advantage of untapped opportunities in the non-oil sectors, such as agriculture, mining tourism and power, soliciting support for women and the teeming youth that are economically disadvantaged.

Sambo said that women accounted for more than 51 per cent of the population and about 70 per cent of them were involved in trade, small scale industries and agriculture but lacked the financial backings and the skill to improve their status.

“These explain why about 65 per cent of the 100 million Nigerians living below poverty line are women,” he said.
She appealed to KADCCIMA to set aside a special day for women entrepreneurs and traders to give them a voice and window to showcase their goods and services.

In his address, Former Head of Interim National Government, Chief Ernest Shonekan added that for the country to improve its economic status, there must be improvements in transportation and resolution of the crises in the labour market and energy sector. “Apart from crude oil, Nigeria is blessed with vast mineral and agricultural resources,’’he noted.

He said proper exploitation and utilisation of the resources would make them to compete with crude oil in contributions to the national revenue.

Shonekan urged the government to inject more funds to agriculture to enable it create jobs, reduce poverty and control youth restlessness. “The Federal Government should establish more refineries to process crude oil for export,” he said

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