Are you stuck in the 70’s or 80’s with the perception that doing business with Nigeria is an impossible adventure, unfriendly, isolated, or unprofitable? Take another look! Things are rapidly changing, and there are now new opportunities opening in what was previously a government dominated by the military, and unfriendly to foreign investors. The successful transition to the first-ever civilian conducted elections in this country marks the beginning of a new era of golden opportunities in one of the largest markets in the world, and the largest market in Africa. The civilian government, which was recently returned to office for a second term, have already instituted, and promised to create an environment conducive to foreign investments in the country by lowering tariffs, trade barriers, and committed to providing American businesses with expanded import and export access to the Nigerian market.
Nigeria has one of the most dynamic, business-oriented economies in Africa, and is the continent’s largest market. With a population of over 175 million people, Nigeria accounts for about 20 percent of the population of Africa; has the largest Afro-descendant population in the world; and occupies an area more than twice the size of California. Nigeria has great potential for a diversified manufacturing base and a vibrant commercial environment. The country’s population is much like that of the United States in that the ethnic composition is very diverse and still includes large numbers of immigrants from the neighboring countries who migrate into the country in search of jobs and better living. The country has abundant natural and human resources, larger labor pool and highly educated populace, ready and eager to be trained to work for a fraction of labor cost in the United States.
The Nigerian Chamber of Commerce-USA (NICOCUSA) in association with various international trade associations is seeking to develop partnerships to explore emerging new business opportunities in the largest market in Africa. Nigeria is the eighth largest oil-producing nation in the world. The country has been plagued with military rule since her independence in 1960, but with recent developments in the nation, which has seen the nation transformed in a democratically elected government since May of 1999, and the first-ever civilian government transition marked by the elections and the inauguration of President Olusegun Obasanjo into a second term in office, has rekindled interests in the country as an emerging market worthy of exploration.
Considering the trouble in the Middle East, US oil interest in this region of the world calls for a redirection of interest. Already, major US oil companies are engaged in oil and gas exploration and production in Nigeria. Beyond crude oil exploration, drilling, services and supplies, Nigeria holds potential for other targeted markets for products and services that US firms can take interest in capturing, which include:
- High technology industries;
- Agro and allied business and industry;
- Environmental products, services and technology (waste management, soil, air and water pollution control and remediation);
- Forestry and timber industry;
- Science and technology, research and education and;
- Commercial and residential real estate development;
- Transportation services, equipment and supplies;
- Infrastructure planning and development (road construction, sewage systems, water supply, electric power generation);
- Health care services (hospital equipment and supplies);
- Mineral resources mining (gold, diamond, uranium, zinc, emeralds); and
“Our single objective is to direct the attention of the United States and the business community to the emerging international trade and investment opportunities in the Nigerian market” …Christian N. Ihenacho, Chairman
In many ways the Nigerian economy can be seen to be like that of the United States, with the exception that the Nigeria market needs to be developed. The U.S. is the largest market and economy in the world. The U.S. companies have extensive experience in oil and gas exploration, production, refining and distribution; minerals exploration and mining; large-scale mechanized agriculture; extensive knowledge and network of infrastructure development, implement and maintenance; high technology industries (information and systems technologies, and communication); leader in environmental controls, technology, products and services; leader in waste management, research, technology and marketing; and home to top prominent education, medical, banking and other finance institutions, just to name a few. These industries, services and institutions are all very much in demand in Nigeria, of which, if pursued constructively, would result in billions of dollars of trade annually, between Nigeria and the United States.
The Nigerian market is to Africa, what the Chinese market is to Asia. They are both emerging and hold great potentials for growth. The US businesses are already capturing a significant share of the trade between US and China and the Pacific Rim countries today. We want the US businesses to also direct their interest to Nigeria as the gateway to Africa.
About the Chamber
The Nigerian Chamber of Commerce-USA is a non-profit organization established to promote international trade, cultural and education exchanges between the peoples and business communities of the United States and Nigeria. Our approach is to lobby both countries; fight unfavorable trade policies and restrictions; holding periodic trade briefings; and working to correct the poor image and perception many Americans associate with the Nigerian government, and Nigerians in general.
NCC-USA up-coming events include the following:
- A briefing on Emerging International Trade Opportunities in the Nigerian Market; July , 2018.
- Produce a documentary highlighting business opportunity in various sectors of the Nigerian economy, starting this fall, 2018.
- NICOCUSA Annual Gala October 2018
- First Annual Economic Summit on International Trade and Investment Opportunities in the Nigerian Market to be held in the Inland Empire in the Spring of 2019.