25 July 2014, Abuja – President Goodluck Jonathan on Thursday, called for closer ties between Nigeria and other members of the Organisation of Petroleum Exporting Countries (OPEC).
Jonathan made the call at a meeting with the new ambassadors of Qatar and the United Arab Emirates (UAE) to Nigeria, after receiving their letters of credence at the Presidential Villa, Abuja.
The new envoys are Mr Mahmud Mohammed Mahmud Al-Mahumud of UAE and Mr Adbdul Aziz Bin Mubarak Seed Al Muhannadi of Qatar.
Mr Reuben Abati, the Special Adviser to the President on Media and Publicity, quoted Jonathan as saying that such partnerships would improve the decision-making process within OPEC.
According to the statement, the president said closer ties would also open up more opportunities for investment and socio-economic collaboration among its members.
“Jonathan told the new ambassadors that the cordial diplomatic relationship between Nigeria and other OPEC member-countries ought to be translated into more beneficial engagements.
“He said that the ongoing Transformation Agenda of the Federal Government had thrown up more opportunities for investments in agriculture, real estate development, power generation, manufacturing and other areas in Nigeria.
“Jonathan, therefore, urged the UAE, Qatar and other OPEC countries to take advantage of the immense potential of Nigeria’s large market and the new investment opportunities in the country.’’
The statement also quoted the president as telling the envoys that many companies from the UAE had invested in telecommunications and real estate, and that they were doing very well.
“We want to see them also in agriculture, manufacturing, oil and gas, and other areas,’’ Jonathan said.
Both ambassadors assured the president that they would do their best to improve trade and economic relations between their respective countries and Nigeria during their tenures.
Jonathan also had a farewell audience with the outgoing ambassador of Finland, Mrs Rita Korpivaara.
The president commended Korpivaara’s efforts at enhancing bilateral relations between Nigeria and Finland.
He wished her success in her future endeavours.