President Muhammadu Buhari has called on the South African government to open up its economy for Nigerian businessmen and women in repayment of Nigeria’s benevolence to its companies.
Special Assistant on Media and Publicity, Garba Shehu, on Thursday quoted Buhari to have said this in Pretoria, South Africa, during the inaugural meeting of the 9th Bi-National Commission of the two countries.
During the apartheid era in South Africa, Nigeria was one of the foremost supporters of anti-apartheid movements, including the African National Congress.
Also after independence, South Africans companies, including MTN and Shoprite, were given an unfettered access to the Nigerian market.
At the ninth Bi-National Commission meeting, Buhari told the South African government to guarantee the safety of Nigerians. He also stressed the need for reciprocity in promoting trade and investments between the two countries.
His words, “We are pleased to inform you that our government has made doing business in Nigeria easier through the Ease of Doing Business Initiative to open up more opportunities for investors in Nigeria.
“We call on the government of South Africa to also take steps to ease the doing of business in the country, and open up its market space for Nigerian businessmen and women. In this context, we are gratified that a Nigeria-South Africa Business Forum has been organised in the framework of this state visit.”
The President, who said Nigeria would continue to value its relationship with South Africa, which is the second largest economy in Africa, stated that 32 agreements and memoranda of understanding had been signed by both countries.