Nigeria-Iran Trade Volume To Hit $500m Annually | Independent Newspapers Limited
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Nigeria-Iran Trade Volume To Hit $500m Annually

Posted: Jun 14, 2015 at 12:00 am   /   by   /   comments (0)

By Andrew Airahuobhor

Volume of trade between Nigeria and Iran is expected to grow from $50 million to $500 million annually, if the opportunities were harnessed. This is despite negative perception of the Islamic country, which had until late 2013, publicly expressed its intentions to combat Western culture and attack the United States, as the ‘source of evil’, along with its allies.

AnnuallyIranian companies reportedly do not know the opportunities available in Nigeria, a very big market, especially with its big population and resources. This situation also applies to Nigerian businesses as they also know little about Iranian companies and the huge potential that the Iranian market offers.

‘’Iran has been exporting and importing commodities to and from Europe and some African countries; there is a silver lining at the end of the tunnel,’’ said Olusegun Awolowo, Executive Director, Nigerian Export Promotion council (NEPC) on Wednesday, at the just concluded 1st Iran solo exhibition that held in Lagos. It started on June 9, and ended on June 11, with 15 companies showcasing Iranian made machines and various products at the exhibition.

Awolowo called on Nigerian business community to take advantage of the $50 billion business opportunities in Iran, urging investors not to entertain fear, adding that the Islamic Republic of Iran was as safe as any other country.

He said that there were opportunities in the health, agriculture and power sectors. He said that developed countries and some African countries had symbiotic trade relationship in terms of value and volume.

The executive director said that the nation could not afford to continually rely on oil, whose price had fallen at the global market.

The Iranian Ambassador to Nigeria, Mr Saeed Koozechi,  said the exhibition was to improve trade between Nigeria and Iran.

Iran is naturally endowed with crude oil had reduced its dependence on oil revenue but concentrated on industry and other industry-related sectors of oil and gas. Iran has leading manufacturing industries in the fields of car-manufacture and transportation, construction materials, home appliances, food and agricultural goods, armaments, pharmaceuticals, information technology, power and petrochemicals in the Middle East.

Koozech said Iran had achieved 95 per cent of self reliance in power sector and in 2014 exported one billion dollar worth of electricity to neighbouring countries. The country exported petrochemicals worth $15 billion in 2014 and has a steel industry capable of producing 17 million tonnes of steel annually.

“I think that since Nigeria is going to establish plants for assemblage of cars, it is possible that Iranian companies in the automotive sector will also be thinking about coming over to Nigeria to establish plants as well,” Koozech said, adding that “With regards to nuclear treatment, we can produce radiographic drugs for the treatment of health cases like cancer.”

He added that Iranian products could compete favorably in terms of price in the local market.