Ghana and Nigeria opens Cooperation discussion
The Session will provide the framework for enhancing the levels of partnership and cooperation between the two countries with seven broad thematic areas.
Mrs Shirley Ayorkor Botchway, the Minister for Foreign Affairs and Regional Integration, who opened the meeting, said these areas included Economic, Finance, Trade and Investment, Defence, Security and Legal and Territorial Administration.
The rest are Energy and Petroleum, Social Development, Transport and Communication, Environment, Agriculture and Aquaculture.
She said Ghana considers the Session particularly significant, given the growing contacts between the two countries, which have now reached unprecedented levels.
“There is no question about the enormous potential for mutually-beneficial cooperation between our two countries in several areas,” she added.
She reaffirmed her commitment towards working closely with the Nigerian team to bring the shared dream of stronger unity and prosperity between the two countries.
Mrs Botchway said it was essential that the two countries endeavour to meet more frequently to review progress in the implementation of the decisions taken at these sessions.
She, therefore, called on experts to engage in the evaluation of the level of implementation of the decision taken during the sixth Session and existing MOU to guide the way forward even as “we deliberate and discuss new areas to establish mutually advantageous cooperation between our two countries”.
Mrs Khadija Bukar Abba Ibrahim, the Minister of State for Foreign Affairs of Nigeria, said the two countries have uncompromisingly played important roles in driving regional integration agenda of the founding fathers of ECOWAS.
She said Nigeria was acknowledged as an important destination of Ghanaian products, whilst Ghana has continued to be an attractive investment destination for Nigerian investors, especially in sectors such as manufacturing, finance, aviation, agriculture, construction as well as oil and gas services.
She said there was no denying fact that the prospect of Nigeria and Ghana relations were indeed very bright, however, a lot of work still needed to be done by both governments to tackle security challenges posed by transitional criminals along the common corridors.
“It is rather unfortunate that criminal elements in Nigeria and Ghana are exploiting the well-intended free movement of goods and services in the sub-region and the attendant weakness along our common borders to carry out their nefarious activities,” she added.