Governments of Nigeria and Saudi Arabia has expressed willingness to improve on their bilateral relationship and collaboration in international politics.
The two governments stated during in Abuja on Tuesday during a meeting between their foreign ministers, Geoffrey Onyeama (Nigeria) and Prince Faisal Al-Saud (Saudi Arabia)
Addressing the press after a close door meeting at the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, Onyeama said both countries have a relationship that dated over a century.
He said both countries are allies at the Organisation of Petroleum Exporting Countries (OPEC) and are currently looking for ways of moving from total dependency on oil into other sectors.
Onyeama said they are looking at ways of increasing trade between their two countries, and are working at setting up a Commission which will bring in business men and women from both countries to explore areas of trade and business.
He said the two countries are willing to improve the framework they already have for cooperation in the area of Joint Commission, explaining that one took place over six years ago and both countries would be having another one before the end of this year.
He said that this will assist Nigeria and Saudi Arabia to identify areas of trade and bilateral relationship.
Onyeama said both nations are also ready to work together in the areas of security especially on challenge of terrorism, insurgency and non state actors destabilizing the countries and around the world.
He said at the meeting they spoke on the need to work together to tackle the challenges.
He said: “We talked about the challenges in the West Africa subregion, in North Africa and in the Red Sea area.
“We spoke about opportunities in the trade and economy field. We spoke of cooperation at bilateral and multilateral levels, even at the level of the United Nations and strengthening our solidarity, speaking together with one voice and pushing for reforms of some of these agencies’
He added that: “We really appreciate the relationship between our nations, and also feeling that together we can make much difference in our bilateral relations and also influencing the global trajectory.”
He said he had an excellent discussion with his Saudi Arab counterpart and with the relationship of President Muhammadu Buhari and the King of Saudi Arabia, there is already a strong foundation for a better relationship between the two countries.
Also speaking, the Saudi Arabia Minister confirmed that they had fruitful discussion that will mutually benefit both nations.
He said the bond of brotherhood between Nigeria and Saudi Arabia is really strong and that both countries can build on this for greater relationship.
He disclosed that both nations would be meeting very soon to further build on the existing business and trade relationship.
Michael Olugbode in Abuja