The Chairman, Nigerian Indian Chamber of Commerce and Industry, Chevalier Itsueli, who gave the indication, explained that there was a need to sustain the depth of the relationship, adding that Indian companies were the biggest employers of labour after the Federal Government.
Itsueli at the anniversary of Diplomatic Engagement between Nigeria and India tagged ‘Nigeria-India @60: People, Partnerships, Prospects’ said Nigeria remained India’s biggest trading partner in Africa. He added that Indian export was also growing in leaps and bounds with its prowess on Information and Communication Technology and medicine.
In his remarks, the President, Lagos Chamber of Commerce and Industry, Babatunde Ruwase, said the trade volume between both countries had hit over $20bn, maintaining that the trade had brought about strong bilateral relationship. He however charged Indian investors to take advantage of Nigeria’s agricultural, health and ICT sectors, pointing out that both countries could achieve a lot in these sectors.
Also speaking, the Minister of State for External Affairs, Republic of India, Mobashar Akbar, said Nigeria and India had a bridge of shared horizon, advising that both economies must complement rather than compete with each other. He urged the governments of both countries to trade more, while also stressing the need for Nigeria to add value to its natural resources rather than exporting them in the raw form.
The Chief Executive Officer, Financial Derivatives Company Limited, Bismark Rewane, said Nigeria had benefited more than India as it recorded $5.4bn from the trade. He highlighted some of the challenges hindering trade between both countries as policy contradiction, trade restrictions, currency policy and misalignment.