The United Kingdom’s (UK) Trade Envoy to Nigeria, John Howell, has restated his country’s commitment to continue to collaborate with the Nigerian Stock Exchange (NSE) to expand and improve the stock markets in both countries.
He made this call after he sounded the closing gong at the NSE recently.
Speaking to journalists briefly, he noted that the first thing that the UK government has done was to appoint him as the Trade Envoy to Nigeria. This, according to him, showed the importance that the UK government attaches to Nigeria.
“There are not many countries in the world that have trade envoy. It is really important getting to know those opportunities, passing them back and for infusing British companies to get involved in the market. It is also a good opportunity for Nigerian companies to get involved in the UK market. We need to look at the increase of prosperity on both sides which is one of the great things I want to achieve.
“My visit to the stock exchange is because this is an important stock exchange in this part of Africa and the continent as a whole. It feels good to be here and to share in the workings of the stock exchange and also closing the bells,” he explained.
He further pledged that there would not be any major change in the new administration of the UK, saying that there would be greater focus on the need to make most of the opportunities that are in the country.
Howell clarified concerns that had been raised over the likely impact of the Brexit referendum on Nigeria, saying that all that was needed was to focus on the enormous enthusiasm the UK has for doing business abroad.
He revealed that there is now a department of international trade to be able to deal and galvanise businesses to be able to look at opportunities overseas.
“I think that would play with Nigeria’s strength as well as turn around,” he added.
As for when British companies would get listed and take advantage of opportunities, he added, saying, “just look around the country, there are British companies here that are doing business and I want to encourage them to do more business.”