By Babajide Komolafe
The Commonwealth Enterprise and Investment Council have commenced moves to increase engagement with Nigeria’s business community.
For this purpose and ahead of next year’s Commonwealth Heads of Government Meeting, the Council has announced the appointment of Mr Obinna Anyanwu as its first Country Head for Nigeria.
CWEIC is mandated by 52 Heads of Government to promote trade and investment across the Commonwealth and recognising that Nigeria is vital to this mission, it will strengthen its relationship and commitment to Nigerian Government and the business community.
Consequently, the CWEIC’s Chief Executive Officer, Mr Richard Burge will visit Nigeria this month to rally business support for greater Commonwealth engagement. This will be Richard’s second visit to Nigeria since his appointment in March 2017, during the trip he will meet key government and business leaders interested in business opportunities across the Commonwealth.
A statement by the Council said: “CWEIC, in partnership with the UK Government and the City of London, will convene Commonwealth leaders for the 11th Commonwealth Business Forum on 16-18 April 2018 in the United Kingdom. 800 Business leaders and 30 Heads of Government will gather in London to discuss trade and investment. The Commonwealth Business Forum provides a unique platform for high-level dialogue between business and Government leaders from the Commonwealth and an unequalled opportunity to access new business opportunities from the association’s 52 Members Countries. His Excellency President Muhammadu Buhari GCFR,has been invited to address the Forum and lead a delegation of Nigerian businesses.
“A successful Business Forum requires a strong Nigerian delegation representing a diverse range of industries. Nigeria is Africa’s largest economy and a leader in the Commonwealth Business Community. Where Nigerian business goes, others follow. CWEIC Advisory Board Members including the Governors of Lagos State and Akwa Ibom, HE Akinwunmi Ambode and HE Udom Emmanuel, Mr Babatunde Soyoye, Mrs Folorunso Alakija, Mr Chibuike Achigbu, Mr Peter Obi and Mr Greg Ogbeifun have been invited to play key roles at the forum.
“As Africa’s largest oil producer and home to a wealth of natural resources, with a large internal market and a young, energetic population, Nigeria deserves its reputation for creativity and entrepreneurial spirit. It is imperative that successful and growing Nigerian businesses come forward to support CWEIC’s push for greater Commonwealth engagement and contribute to the Commonwealth Business Forum.”