The Minister of Industry, Trade and Investment, Adeniyi Adebayo, has expressed concern over the decrease in the volume of trade between Nigeria and South Korea.
The minister stated this while receiving the South Korean Ambassador to Nigeria, Kim Young-Chae, who was on a courtesy visit to his office, on Tuesday in Abuja.
He noted that the volume of trade between the two countries went down from $5 million in 2018 to $1.3 million in 2019.
In a statement issued by his Special Assistant on Media, Ifedayo Sayo, Mr. Adebayo noted that Nigeria and South Korea shared strong economic and investment ties with over 20 Korean companies presently operating in the country.
According to him, some of the companies include Samsung and Hyundai Heavy Industries.
The minister stressed the need for the South Korean embassy, Federal Ministry of Foreign Affairs, and his ministry to work closely towards improving the volume of trade between the two countries.
He specifically called on Korean investors to take advantage of the country’s involvement in African Continental Free Trade Area (AfCFTA) to invest in Nigeria to enhance access to the large market in the African continent.
Mr. Adebayo also encouraged South Korean investors to invest in the new special economic zones established by the ministry in the six geo-political zones and the existing free trade zones in Calabar, Lekki, and Kano, among others, to boost investment.
He listed the efforts already made by the federal government to attract foreign investment to the country to include the establishment of a one-stop investment center to provide a 48-hour delivery to prospective investors.
Others were ports upgrading, streamlining of agencies operating at the ports; banking reforms initiative to support real sector, and establishment of special economic zones in pursuit of Nigeria’s industrialization agenda.
In his remarks, Mr. Kim promised to deepen the trade relations between the two countries, promising support for government programs and policies.