By Dipo Olowookere
British Prime Minister Theresa May has commended President Muhammadu Buhari of Nigeria for leading a successful business reform agenda in the Africa’s most populous nation.
Mrs May gave a pat on Mr Buhari’s back when both leaders met yesterday at 10 Downing Street, London.
Mr Buhari is among the leaders attending the Commonwealth Heads of Government Meeting (CHOGM) in London.
At the meeting on Monday, Mrs May “congratulated the President (of Nigeria) on leading a successful business reform agenda in Nigeria, noting that as the UK leaves the EU, our bilateral trade and investment relationship would continue to go from strength to strength.”
However, the British Prime Minister expressed concerns that “so many girls had been affected by the security situation in Nigeria.”
But she said the thoughts of the British people were with the girls and their families.
In a statement issued by 10 Downing Office, it was disclosed that during Monday’s meeting, both leaders “agreed that the UK and Nigeria were strong and enduring partners and that we would continue to champion our shared values of democracy, including the fight against corruption, and inclusive education.”
It was disclosed that, “They agreed our defence and security cooperation was close and longstanding, particularly on issues of regional security where we were working together to tackle the threat of Boko Haram and Islamic State West Africa, including through a new £1 million package of counter-IED equipment to protect troops and civilians in Nigeria.”
“They agreed on the importance of tackling climate change, and of fighting the scourge of modern slavery and discussed Salisbury and Syria, agreeing on the vital importance of upholding international norms against the use of chemical weapons,” the statement obtained by Business Post on Tuesday disclosed.
In 2017, the Mr Buhari-led administration launched the Economic Recovery and Growth Plan (ERGP), a Medium Term Plan for 2017 – 2020 developed for the purpose of restoring economic growth while leveraging the ingenuity and resilience of the Nigerian people – the nation’s most priceless assets.
In the second quarter of 2016, Nigeria slipped into an economic recession caused by many factors, including drop in oil prices in the global market as well as attacks on oil facilities in the oil rich Niger Delta region of the country, which dropped the level of production.
Worried that the economy was likely to remain on a path of steady and steep decline if nothing was done to change the negative trajectory, government came up with the ERGP to tackle the causes of the recession and ultimately change the national economic trajectory in a fundamental way.
The scheme led to different business reforms, improving the ease of doing business in Nigeria.
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