The Nigeria-Malaysia Business Council has collaborated with the Nigeria Export Promotion Council and the Malaysia Department of Trade to set up a special trade corridor that will enable Malaysian businesses and Nigerian farmers and exporters to collaborate with a view to adding quality to goods exported from Nigeria to Malaysia.
According to NEPC, special focus will be on crops such as cocoa, palm produce, rubber and solid minerals that are mostly exported in their raw form to Malaysia and other markets.
Speaking at a one-day workshop organsed to educate exporters about the trade platform, the Regional Coordinator, South-West, NEPC, Mr. Babatunde Faleke, said that the essence of the trade corridor was to aid Nigerian exporters’ understanding of the type of exports Malaysia wanted and how they should be packaged.
He noted that the collaboration between the two countries would lead to an exchange of ideas, transfer of technology and value addition to Nigeria’s exports.
Faleke said, “Malaysia is hoping to enter into a joint venture with Nigeria and they are ready to come to Nigeria with some value addition programmes.
“It is being driven by the private sector and not the government. Trade with Malaysia has not been so favourable to Nigeria because we mostly export raw produce to the outside world but we can gain more if there is value addition.”
The Secretary and member of governing council, Nigeria-Malaysia Business Council, Mr. Gbemi Adelekan, said that the trade corridor was aimed at encouraging Nigerians to add value to their exports instead of exporting raw produce.
He said, “We told Malaysia that we as a trade council do not want to encourage just importation from Malaysia, that we want to push our agricultural produce as well.
“So, we want to be able to get Malaysians that are buying our products to form a joint venture with the people that are selling the agricultural products, to be able to add value and develop them to the level that they require.”
Adelekan added that the Nigeria-Malaysia trade corridor was going to serve as a forum for offering advisory services and information to Nigerian exporters and farmers on how to improve and add value to their products.
The Malaysian Trade Commissioner, Moamar Kareem, said that Nigeria was the most lucrative country to trade with, adding that the commission recently relocated its office from Nairobi to Lagos for this reason.