|Nigeria’s Minister of Foreign Affairs, Geoffrey Onyema|
The Nigeria’s Minister of Foreign Affairs, Geoffrey Onyeama, on Monday said arrangement was underway to boost the country’s economic ties with Tunisia.
Onyeama made the call in Abuja in his remarks at a business forum preceding Nigeria-Tunis Joint Ministerial Commission, said attention would be given to trade, economy and technology.
The minister said the two-day meeting marked another milestone in the bilateral relations between Nigeria and Tunisia.
“We appreciate the impressive development that had taken place in Tunisia which had really catapulted the country to the level mid income country.
“In all categories Tunisia is showing itself to be a leading country in the world today in the ICT, medical and agriculture among others, it has a made tremendous stride.
“That is why we are particularly happy in strengthening the bilateral relations between the two countries,” Onyema said.
According to him, the presidents of the two countries respected each other, adding that such cordiality would take the relations to a new level.
Onyema said the ongoing Joint Ministerial Commission between Nigeria and Tunisia at the ministry would identify various sectors in which level of cooperation could be increased.
According to him, the business forum will enhance the relations between the two countries.
“The era of hostility in global trade has long gone we have fought it hard, we know that might not be always the case as we have some push back against economic and trade cooperation.
“We do hope that internationally that good sense will prevail and that the promotion of free trade and putting down and reducing barriers and tariff and that is still the norm.
“We are of the hope that there would not be a return to the era of protectionism’’, the minister said.
Onyema added that the meeting between the two countries had demonstrated that Africa was no prepared to promote freer trade in the continent.
“The meeting has presented wonderful opportunity for both countries; our business sectors of private sectors will drive the growth of both countries.
“The governments will have to put in place the enabling environment that is essentially because the private sector is the engine of growth of the economy,” the minister said.
“Mr Khemaise Jhinaoui, his counterpart from Tunisia said the discussions at the meeting would identify new area of common interest mainly in investment and science and technology.
According to him, agreement to be signed later will also enhance the relationship between the two countries especially in the area of business and technology.
“We have already existing relations but the relations is still below expectation currently the trade pattern does not reflect their long term relations,” Jhinaoui said.