The Abuja Chamber of Commerce and Industry (ACCI) has stressed the need to encourage inter-African partnerships among chambers of commerce and industry in Africa for rapid economic diversification of the continent.
The first deputy president of ACCI, Chief Emeka Obegbolu, made the call when he received the ambassador of Equatorial Guinea to Nigeria, Francisco Edu Ngua Mangue, at the chamber’s headquarters in Abuja, saying expanding partnership and collaboration among the chambers would ensure diversification of African economies from over-dependence on oil and mineral resources.
Obegbolu who received the team on behalf of the chamber’s president, Dr. Al-Mujataba Abubakar, said the cooperation would be in the spirit of the African Continental Free Trade Area (AfCFTA) and would deepen economic exchange and enhance business prosperity among them.
He contended that partnership between Nigeria and Equatorial Guinea would be laudable since the two countries have similar trajectory of over dependence on oil and are trying to diversify into agriculture and other sectors, pointing out the plan of the Abuja chamber to explore the advantage of partnership through the Chamber of Commerce in Bata, Equatorial Guinea to leverage on business activities that could benefit the two countries.
In a presentation, the ACCI director-general, Victoria Akai, explained the activities of the centre to the ambassador and requested that AACI be introduced to the Equatorial Guinea Chamber to facilitate their partnership in the area of business and trade agreement.
She said the chamber was recently adopted by NACCIMA as a national centre to cover all the activities of chambers in Nigeria explaining that the chamber is an organised private sector one funded by members.
Earlier in his remarks, the ambassador said the visit to the ACCI was to seek partnership of the Nigerian private sector for common activities on the diversification of their economies, adding his country has been over dependent on oil but it is now diversifying with focus on mining, agriculture, fishery and livestock and called for the support of ACCI.
“We have over 50,000 Nigerians in our country, so we are not just trying to do business but to connect with Nigerians,” he added.
A statement by the chamber’s media officer, Olayemi John-Mensah, said the envoy said they have sectors such as agriculture, mining and others where they want to come in, adding they want ACCI to serve as a link to businesses and businessmen they want to partner with in Nigeria.