The Nigerian government is seeking the vote of Iran for its candidate, Ngozi Okonjo-Iweala in the race to the World Trade Organisation’s (WTO) Director-General office.
Nigeria lobbies Republic of Iran’s vote in WTO elections as her own Okonjo-Iweala is among the five cleared for the elections. The WTO is looking for a new director-general to replace Brazilian Roberto Azevedo, who stepped down a year earlier than expected at the end of August.
Apert Ngozi Okonjo-Iweala, the others are Kenyan minister Amina Mohamed, South Korean Trade Minister Yoo Myung-hee, Saudi Arabia’s Mohammad Al-Tuwaijri and British ex-minister Liam Fox.
READ ALSO: WTO: Female Parliamentary Caucus throws weight behind Okonjo-Iweala
The Minister of Industry, Trade and Investment, Richard Adebayo told the Iranian Ambassador to Nigeria, Mohammed Alibak, that Okonjo-Iweala’s election victory will strengthen global trade and economies.
The Minister stated that Nigeria would rely on Iran’s support for the election of Ngozi Okonjo-Iwela as the next DG for WTO, stressing that if elected it would be the first time an African will occupy the position since its establishment on 1st January 1995.
Adebayo further said the Bilateral Trade Agreements (BTA) earlier signed between the two countries in 2001, the Investment Promotion and Protection Agreement (IPPA) in 2008, the establishment of the Nigeria-Iran Joint Commission in 2004, and the Iran Chamber, Industry, Mines, and Agriculture in 2016 should be sustained.
He assured the Ambassador that Nigeria will work with Iran to improve on the current low trade volumes as both countries have great potential that can leverage on considering the fact that the two countries are oil-dependent economies.
He said, “We can also share knowledge and best practices on economic diversification and our national development goals as Buhari’s led Administration is pushing to diversify the economy into the non-oil sector through various initiatives and a strategic partnership in the industrialization of key sectors that can boost efforts towards export of Iran and Nigeria.”
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