On Monday, President Bola Tinubu emphasized Nigeria’s strong commitment to attracting German investment, particularly in key sectors such as energy, transportation, and electric power.
This commitment was discussed during talks with German Chancellor Olaf Scholz on the sidelines of the G20 ‘Compact with Africa’ Economic Conference.
According to a statement from Special Adviser to the President on Media and Publicity, Ajuri Ngelale, Said “President Tinubu highlighted the success of Siemens AG in transforming the quantity and quality of electric power supply in Egypt.”
He pledged a renewed focus on the Siemens-supported Presidential Power Initiative, ensuring a more deliberate project execution to address Nigeria’s energy challenges.
President Tinubu expressed interest in Siemens’ expertise in modernizing and expanding Nigeria’s rail network. Specifically, he mentioned the construction of a new 2,000km ultra-high-speed rail network in Egypt by Siemens and sought Siemens’ involvement in upgrading Nigeria’s rail infrastructure with ultra-modern trains and railways, aiming to more than double the speed of the current standard-gauge systems.
In response, German Chancellor Scholz expressed readiness to collaborate, acknowledging the need to overcome administrative and financial challenges rooted in prior governance issues.
He emphasized the importance of resolving existing infrastructure issues to ensure electricity production reaches the population.
“Certainly, this relates to the necessity of establishing stations and infrastructure on the grid. Siemens has crafted a plan and is prepared to advance its execution. The responsibility now rests with your new government to pursue the subsequent actions that you have pledged to undertake.”
Tinubu also urged the German business community to focus on value-additive processing in Nigerian solid minerals, agriculture, automobile production, and other job-creating sectors.
He reassured Chancellor Scholz that Nigeria was undergoing significant business environment reforms, dispelling concerns about past issues.
Chancellor Scholz acknowledged the potential for Nigeria’s growth, drawing parallels with China’s development. He highlighted the need for foreign investment leveraging abundant natural resources, skilled labor, and improved infrastructure.
“In Nigeria, these possibilities exist, bolstered by abundant natural resources. Achieving them is a step-by-step process, Mr. President.”
The leaders agreed to deepen collaboration on advanced biometric systems and border control technology to address irregular migration.
They also emphasized the importance of investments in labor-intensive industries to tackle root causes of migration issues.
President Tinubu further exchanged views with German Federal President Frank-Walter Steinmeier, solidifying the commitment to collaboration.
The discussions underscored the potential for enhanced economic cooperation between the largest economies in Africa and Europe, paving the way for transformative initiatives and mutual benefits.