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Border to Remain Closed

The Federal Government has yet to announce the date for the repoening of the Nigerian border to its neighbouring countries.  In an excercise named Operation Exercise Swift Response, security agencies closed borders in August. 

There have been mixed reactions to the border closure with some labelling it positive while some assert that it conflicts with the African Continental Free Trade Agreement.

Mariam Katagum, Minister of State for Industry, Trade and Investment stated there had been meetings with Benin Republic and Niger for negotiation on border reopening. 

She said one of the fallouts of the meeting was the setting up of a joint border patrol team made up of security personnel from customs , airforce and other security agencies .

The minister said the decision to reopen the border would be based on recommendations from the patrol team on whether Niger and Benin Republic have complied with trade protocols .

She said, “ We had the strategic meeting with the three countries and what we agreed with our neighbors is to activate a joint border patrol and that border patrol comprising the customs , all the security agencies and ensure to try to follow the actual protocol laid by ECOWAS .

“ The committee met on November 25 and it is only when that committee is certain that all the countries are respecting the ECOWAS protocol that they will recommend a day for the opening of the border .”

The Minister of Industry Trade and Investment, Richard Adebayo, said that the ministry is currently carrying out a review of the country ’ s trade policy as well as the Nigeria Industrial Revolution Plan to reflect current economic realities .

He also said that the automotive policy is being reviewed , adding that a meeting would be held with stakeholders in the auto sector on January 28 to get their input to the policy .

He said after the stakeholders ’ meeting , the executive would present a bill to the National Assembly for the policy to become law .

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