UK Signs Enhanced Trade and Investment Partnership Agreement with Nigeria

Michael Olugbode in Abuja

The United Kingdom has signed an Enhanced Trade and Investment Partnership (ETIP) with Nigeria to boost trade and investment between the two countries and unlock new opportunities for UK and Nigerian businesses. 

The UK Minister for Trade and Business, Kemi Badenoch, signed the ETIP alongside her Nigerian counterpart, Trade Minister Doris Nkiruka Uzoka-Anite, on Tuesday in Abuja. 

The ETIP is the first the UK has signed with an African country and is designed to grow the UK and Nigeria’s already thriving trading relationship, which currently stands at £7 billion. 

This arrangement will pave the way for opportunities in sectors crucial to both economies such as finance and legal services, as well as foster new collaborations in innovative areas like the creatives industry. 

The visit by the Secretary of State comes a week ahead of a UK Government-led fashion and beauty trade delegation to Nigeria.  

The ETIP also initiates further collaboration on the UK’s ambitious Developing Countries Trading Scheme (DCTS), launched last year which puts in place simpler and more generous trading terms for Nigeria and 36 other African countries.

Nigeria is a major beneficiary of changes introduced by the DCTS and will see tariff reductions on over 3,000 products, meaning that 99% of existing Nigerian exports to the UK by value will be duty free. 

Tariffs have been removed on Nigerian goods, which promote value addition in important non-oil export sectors such as cocoa butter and paste, sesame oil and clothing and apparel. 

These changes will boost trade with the UK and support the Federal Government of Nigeria’s wider trade policy priorities.

Badenoch said: “The UK and Nigeria are vital partners, with longstanding historical and economic ties. 

“UK businesses are already seeing huge success in Nigeria – one of the fastest growing economies in the world. 

“I’m delighted to be here to sign our new enhanced partnership which will allow UK firms to export their world-class goods and services more easily and expand their footprint in Nigeria.” 

Nigerian Minister of Trade, Uzoka-Anite, said: “The UK is one of our long-standing strategic partners with whom we share strong ties, and it gladdens me that this relationship is set to deepen as we sign the Enhanced Trade and Investment Partnership.

“This partnership will see Nigeria-UK relations move beyond one of shared history and strong ties to one of shared economic prosperity. From increasing market access and supporting our vibrant businesses, to creating more jobs and accelerate greater investments in sectors of mutual interests.” 

The ETIP will help to build on the significant progress already made in resolving market access barriers in the education and financial sectors, which have led to a more favourable trading environment for UK and Nigerian businesses. 

In addition, through this partnership, there is an opportunity to leverage UK and international investment from the City of London, which is home to the top financial and professional services.

TheCityUK International Managing Director, Nicola Watkinson, said: “Nigeria is an important growth market for the UK-based financial and related professional services industry and TheCityUK welcomes the signing of the new ETIP. 

“We look forward to continuing our engagement through the working groups to increase market access and remove regulatory frictions.”

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