The NEPC Executive Director said African countries have not fully explored the opportunities provided by the inter-Africa-trade policy.
The Nigeria Export Promotion Council, NEPC, and its Kenya counterpart, on Tuesday pledged to explore the vast market opportunities in Africa to promote trade and investment.
The two made the commitment when the Chief Executive Officer of Kenyan Export Promotion Council, Ruth Mwaniki, visited the NEPC office in Abuja.
The NEPC Executive Director, Olusegun Awolowo, said African countries have not fully explored the opportunities provided by the inter-Africa-trade policy.
He said that the continent could only reach an enviable economic growth if the countries encourage trades between them.
Mr. Awolowo said that Kenya and Nigeria must engage in exchange programmes that would stimulate enterprise and economic growth.
“The NEPC is principally established to offer help and assistance that could boost enterprise.
“Both countries can therefore explore the available opportunities provided by the Inter-Africa-Trade policy.
“Kenya has comparative advantage in horticulture business just as Nigeria has in the film-making and oil exploration.
“We are also strong producers of cocoa, rubber, cassava, sesame seeds and endowed with so many natural resources yet to be explored.
“Therefore, the two countries could leverage on these opportunities to strengthen their economies,’’ he said.
Mr. Awolowo said the country’s export expansion grants and export development funds have been judiciously used to support entrepreneurship.
He stressed that entrepreneurs require the incentives to remain vibrant in the present competitive business environment.
“We have used the export development funds to support new entrants into the business world,’’ he said.
On NEPC inputs to the World Economic Forum, the executive director said the council would cash in on the influx of investors to explore possible partnership with local entrepreneurs.
On her part, Ms. Mwaniki expressed delight in the opportunity to visit Nigeria, adding that Kenya is prepared to partner with Nigeria to expand trades in Africa.
“The European markets are no longer interesting; Kenya’s priority is now to market its products within Africa.
“When this happens, the continent and its people would be better for it.
“We have some many commodities to trade among ourselves, what is required is for the various countries to add value to them.
“We are trusting in Nigeria’s experience in oil exploration and other endowments to assist Kenya.
“In fact, we view Nigeria as the big brother and therefore trade between the two countries is sure way to growth to solidify the continent,’’ Mwaniki said.
Officials from Kenya were part of President Uhuru Kenyatta’s delegation to the World Economic Forum holding in Abuja.