By Maureen Okon
The President of the Russian Chamber of Commerce, Mr Sergey Katyrin, has said that Russian companies and businesses were ready to partner and invest in Nigeria.
This is contained in a statement signed by the Nigerian Embassy in Moscow, Russia, and made available to the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) on Wednesday, in Abuja.
Katyrin said this in Moscow while receiving the Nigerian Ambassador to Russia Prof. Abdullahi Shehu, who visited the Russian Chamber of Commerce and Industry.
Katyrin stated that the Chamber regularly hosted country and company presentations, which the Nigerian side can take advantage of to explore areas of cooperation and partnership.
He added that the Chamber organises exhibitions for information exchanges under the auspices of Expocentre Fairgrounds.
Katyrin assured the Nigerian envoy of his full cooperation and the readiness of Russian companies and businesses to invest in Nigeria, expressing the readiness of the Russian Business Council in facilitating such cooperation along with its Nigerian counterpart.
Responding, Shehu noted that Nigeria had maintained stable relations with the Russian Federation dating back to the Soviet era.
According to him, the two countries could achieve more in their economic cooperation if Russian businesses showed more interest in Nigeria, as the African commercial nerve centre, and the economic hub of the West African sub-region.
“For any Russian companies, Nigeria is the gateway to Africa”, A good example is the decision of the Russian company called URALCHEM to establish in Nigeria.
“URALCHEM is one of the largest companies in the mineral fertilisers market and the second largest producer of nitrogen fertilisers in Russia, to open a representative office and a fertiliser plant in Nigeria before the end of 2021,” it stated.
The Ambassador also called on other Russian companies to follow the example of URALCHEM to not only export products to Nigeria, but also produce such goods in Nigeria.
He added that the Embassy planned to organise a trade mission to Nigeria soon, while offering the Russian Chamber of Commerce and Industry to assist in organising trips for interested businesses.
Shehu stressed that the embassy was ready to organise regular trips of representatives of Russian companies to Nigeria to avail them the avenues to better understand the risks and opportunities in the country.
He said that part of his mandate was to facilitate trade and government was looking forward to collaborating with Russian investors interested in the Nigerian economy,
Also, speaking at the meeting was the Chairman of the Board of Directors of URALCHEM, Mr Dmitry Konyaev, who confirmed that his company would soon open its representative office in Nigeria and would also establish a plant.
He further stressed the great potential of the Nigerian market for the supply of mineral fertilisers, and the importance of exporting Russian knowledge and technology to Nigeria.
Konyaev further indicated that URALCHEM was collaborating with RUDEN University, under a scholarship scheme, to attract Nigerians to study agricultural specialties and return home to transfer the technology to Nigeria.
NAN reports that Mr Konyaev was elected as the new Chairman of the Russia-Nigeria Business Council in May 2021. (NAN)