Nigeria, Ukraine trade volume drops 4% downward
The Federal Government has expressed concerns over poor trade volume between Nigeria and Ukraine, which currently stands at $93.3 million as at November 2017, indicating a decrease of 4 percent compared to the 2016 figures.
Boss Mustapha, Secretary to the Government of the Federation, made the observation on Thursday, during the Nigeria – Ukraine Trade and Investment roundtable in Abuja.
He has however expressed hope that with the visit of the Ukrainian delegation, the trade volume between the two countries would increase.
“The visit came at a time Nigeria is pursuing economic growth that will aid its vision of being among top 20 economies in the world.
“As at November last year, trade volume between Nigeria and Ukraine was $93.3 million which is a decrease by four percent in 2016. With your visit we hope the volume of trade would increase in 2018,” he said.
Mustapha was also seeking partnership with Ukraine on how to develop Nigeria’s waterways.
He said Nigeria must develop its inland waterways to reduce traffic on the roads.
He added, “Nigeria has 10,000 kilometres waterways and 4,000 are navigable and I believe if fully developed can take away pressure from our roads as bulk of our cargo can go on our waterways.”
On her part, Natalia Mykolska, the Trade Representative of Ukraine, Deputy Minister for Economic Development and Trade of Ukraine, said Nigeria was a long-standing friend of Ukraine, noting that Nigerian students in Ukraine are the best ambassadors for both countries.
“Nigeria is a strategic partner, we believe trade is not a one way street, we need to think of import, export and joint cooperation.
“More than 10 Ukraine companies that represent different sectors of the economy are on this delegation – agriculture and food sector, grains and food cooperation, machine building factory, breaks and bolts use in automotive sector, pharmaceutical sector, poultry, among other sectors,” she said.
On his part, Ambassador Chinedu Osakwe, Nigeria Office of Trade Negotiations, Chief Trade Negotiator Director General, said the global financial crisis of 2008 affected Nigeria as well as the 2014 oil price crisis.
This, he said, was the reason the current administration under Muhammadu Buhari was interested in the diversification of the economy.
He also alluded to the fact that Nigeria and Ukraine have huge trade imbalances, putting the import from Ukraine to Nigeria at N91 billion while export from Nigeria is N90 million.
He listed the priority areas of interest to the country to include maritime services that is the development of the waterways.
“It is an area that we will need to identify to work together. Other areas are agriculture, robotics, genetics, energy, mining and manufacturing. The watch word is value chain which we are interested in developing,” he stated.