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South Africa and Nigeria Strengthen Economic Ties with $670 Million Trade

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President Cyril Ramaphosa of South Africa held a bilateral meeting with President Bola Ahmed Adekunle Tinubu of Nigeria on Thursday. This meeting follows President Tinubu’s attendance at President Ramaphosa’s Presidential Inauguration on Wednesday, where he witnessed the swearing-in ceremony.

The bilateral discussions underscored the strategic importance of the relationship between South Africa and Nigeria. The two nations are pivotal players not only in their bilateral relations but also within the West Africa region and across the continent. They are united in their pursuit of the African Agenda, South-South cooperation, and the promotion of a rules-based international system.

According to the Nigerian Bureau of Statistics (NBS), South Africa emerged as Nigeria’s top trading partner in Africa for the first quarter of 2024, with trade between the two countries surpassing $670 million. This robust trade figure highlights the deep economic ties and mutual benefits of their partnership.

Strengthening Ties
“South Africa regards Nigeria as a strategic partner in multiple contexts, including bilateral relations, regional cooperation, and continental unity. Our shared goals in the African Agenda and commitment to a rules-based international system solidify our partnership,” stated President Ramaphosa.

President Tinubu expressed his optimism about the future of this partnership. “Our countries have a long history of collaboration, and the substantial trade figures in Q1 2024 are a testament to our strong economic relationship. We look forward to building on this foundation to achieve even greater economic integration and cooperation,” he said.

Economic Milestones
Both South Africa and Nigeria are active members of the African Continental Free Trade Area (AfCFTA), which aims to create a single continental market for goods and services, facilitating free movement of businesses and investments. The impressive trade volume between the two nations in the first quarter of 2024 underscores the potential for further economic growth and collaboration under the AfCFTA framework.

Looking Ahead
The bilateral meeting and the impressive trade statistics signify a promising future for South Africa-Nigeria relations. Both leaders are committed to exploring new avenues for cooperation and strengthening their economic ties.

In the words of President Ramaphosa, “Our nations are stronger together, and by deepening our economic and political ties, we pave the way for a more prosperous and stable African continent.”

President Tinubu echoed this sentiment, emphasizing the importance of unity and collaboration in achieving common goals. “Together, we can create a brighter future for our people and contribute significantly to the global economy,” he concluded.

By Gabriel Ani

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