Agro products take back seat as Nigeria’s export to Turkey improves

Turkey ranked among five Nigeria’s export destinations in the third quarter of 2020. Unfortunately, oil was the dominant commodity exported just like in most other trade dealings between Nigeria and its foreign partners.


The agricultural commodity that the Federal Government spent huge funds and resources trying to boost did not quite make the cut as the preferred export commodity to the transcontinental nation.


Data from the National Bureau of Statistics (NBS) suggests that despite the growth in the agricultural sector, agricultural exports as a whole declined by 22.6 per cent in the review quarter compared to the previous period. In the quarter under review, exports to Turkey amounted to N150.01bn (5.1 per cent), mostly mineral fuels and oils.


Out of this volume, agricultural goods export was a mere N1.4bn.( N1,352,500,000). India ranked number one with 16.73 per cent and N500.6bn export goods from Nigeria, followed by Spain with exports worth N328.5bn or 10.97 per cent of total exports. Others are; the Netherlands- N227.8bn or 7.61 per cent and South Africa-N203.9 0r 6.81 per cent.


Nigeria’s export to Turkey only started seeing a rise in 2019 after dipping dangerously from a high of N200.3bn in 2014 to a low of N68.3bn in 2016. Nigeria had expected trade with Turkey to hit 330bn after a bilateral trade agreement signed by Nigeria and Turkey in 2011.


As the Chairman of the Group of Eight Developing Countries, D-8, and Nigeria’s President, Dr Goodluck Jonathan, led a 14-man delegation to Turkey on a two-day visit, the volume of trade between the two countries is expected to hit over $2bn (about N330bn).


Trade volume between the duo at the time(2011), stood at a little over N195bn at an exchange rate of N150/$, but this was expected to rise by about 60 per cent as Jonathan signed a Bilateral Trade Agreement, BTA, with the Turkish Prime Minister, Mr Tayyip Endogan in the country’s capital, Ankara.


This was to be followed by a business summit between the organised private sector from both countries, in the Turkish commercial capital, Istanbul. Businessmen and women from the two countries had met in Abuja to fine tune preparations for the Istanbul business parley as a follow up to the Turkey Export Product Fair which was staged in 2010 in Lagos by the Nigerian Association of Chambers of Commerce, Mines and Agriculture, NACCMA. While Nigeria hoped to expand her trade and business with Turkey in different sectors of the economy, including mining, textiles, oil, food security, the Turkish authorities wanted to increase its investment in Nigeria, particularly in energy and construction.


The Nigerian OPS also wanted the Turkey government, which currently maintains an Embassy in Abuja, to open a Visa issuance and related matters office in Lagos, to ease the difficulty in procuring visa.


Nigeria mostly exports mineral fuels, oils distillation products, oil seeds, oleagic fruits, grains, seeds, fruits, cocoa and cocoa preparations, edible fruits, cotton, nuts, peel of citrus fruits, melons, cotton, wood and articles of wood, among others. In 2019, Nigeria exported N56.40m worth of oil seed, oleagic grain and fruits, seed fruits to Turkey.


The country realized more than N511, 000 from the export of cocoa and cocoa preparations to Turkey in the same period while export of edible fruits, nuts, peel of citrus fruits, melons attracted N451,000. Cotton exports to Turkey in 2019 fetched Nigeria a little above

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