The Minister of State for Foreign Affairs, Prof. Viola Onwuliri, on Thursday scored the trade relations between Nigeria and Philippines as “quite low.”
The minister made the remark at the 2nd Nigeria-Philippines Joint Commission in Abuja.
“In spite of the long standing relations between the two countries, the economic and trade relations have been quite low..
“Whilst it is heartening to note that there have been an increasing number of Filipino companies conducting business in Nigeria, there is yet much to be done to improve our economic and trade relations,” the News Agency of Nigeria quoted the minister as saying at the forum.
Onwuliri, however, noted that the two countries had achieved “a desirable” record on their bilateral relations.
She said that numerous Filipinos had been engaged as expatriate workers thereby contributing positively to the development of Nigeria.
The minister also noted that some Nigerians were currently in the process of taking up jobs in the Philippines.
Onwuliri described the Commission, which was being kick- started 27 years after its establishment, as significant adding that a new impetus will be introduced to broaden existing bilateral relations.
“Nigeria and Philippines have several areas for mutually beneficial cooperation which will enhance the growth and development of our two countries,’’ she said.
The minister listed the areas to include education, health, agriculture, water resources, immigration, culture and tourism, trade and commerce and Justice.
She suggested that the collective desire and focus of the two countries should be to institute fruitful deliberations.
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