Tag: African Trade

  • 4th October, 2023
  • 2 min reading

On the 29th of September, ETK Nigeria hosted a remarkable evening at the luxurious Wheatbaker in Ikoyi, Lagos, Nigeria. The event, named “ETK ConnectXperience,” served as a platform for us to introduce ETK to potential partners and share our vision for the future with those who have played a pivotal role in our growth and success in Nigeria.

We had the pleasure of hosting Nigerian development agencies, the UK-based ETK Team, along with other team members and stakeholders from the trade and exports, export financing, and exports sectors. This gathering allowed us to showcase ETK’s accomplishments spanning over 13 years, highlighting our expertise in international trade and business development across Africa. It was not just an event; it was an opportunity for networking and collaboration among our esteemed guests.

During the event, our Group Managing Director, Bolaji Sofoluwe, delivered an insightful presentation. She shed light on how ETK has utilised a combination of people, processes, and technology since our inception in 2010. This approach has enabled us to successfully execute projects in 34 African markets and engage in deals worth over $1 billion.

At ETK Nigeria, we offer a range of consulting services tailored to assist African businesses in achieving their growth and expansion goals. From organisational transformation to capacity building, ESG strategy, reporting, auditing, market entry and expansion services, managed business services, and access to capital markets, we provide comprehensive solutions to empower businesses.

In response to questions from our guests, attendees had the opportunity to engage with our Director of Operations, Brent Barnette. He emphasised ETK’s commitment to supporting companies at any stage of their reporting journey. Whether it’s creating an ESG strategy and framework, conducting an ESG audit, developing mitigation strategies, or offering technology and engineering services, we stand ready to assist companies in their ESG journey.

For more than 13 years, ETK has been the preferred consultant for international companies aiming to grow and expand in Africa’s dynamic markets. We have also assisted African companies in their global expansion plans. As we look ahead, we are eager to continue our collaborations with partners in Nigeria and other African nations. Together, we aim to achieve even greater success and contribute to the growth of businesses in Africa and beyond.

  • 2nd October, 2023
  • < 1 min reading
Our Group Managing Director, Bolaji Sofoluwe, recently spoke to Boason Omofaye on ARISE News about how Africa fits into the UK government’s ambitions to increase UK exports to £1 trillion a year by 2030. She also spoke about how African businesses can maximise opportunities to export to the UK.

The UK’s Department for Business and Trade announced earlier this year that it is working with businesses across the country to encourage them to export for the first time or expand their existing international sales to support its mission of reaching £1 trillion in annual exports by the end of the decade.

As a UK Export Champion, ETK Group believes strongly that Africa’s economy can benefit greatly from this trading relationship, and we are committed to supporting businesses in the UK and across Africa to maximise the opportunities that are available.
You can watch the full interview here: https://bit.ly/3ZHK9ty

  • 10th August, 2023
  • 2 min reading

On July 26, Nigériens and the rest of the world woke up to a shocking announcement of the overthrow of 63-year-old President Mohamed Bazoum by top military leaders in the country. This marked the fifth coup experienced by the resource-rich African nation since gaining independence in 1960. The outcome of this upheaval resulted in the ascent of General Abdourahamane Tiani, the leader of the presidential guard, to the helm of a newly formed military government.

While the military Juntas have refused to relinquish power, regional and Western partners of Niger have announced a series of sanctions against the country.

Sanctions on Niger

The first in the series of sanctions was the announcement of the closure of all borders with Niger, the banning of commercial flights, the suspension of all commercial transactions, the freezing of the country’s assets and accounts in the regional central bank, and the suspension of all financial assistance by the 15-nation ECOWAS bloc. Nigeria, a neighboring country and close partner, further escalated by cutting power supply to Niger, all in a concerted effort to wrestle control from the military leadership and reinstate democratic governance.

The most recent blow to Niger’s economic growth and trade has come in the form of the World Bank’s decision to suspend a significant $4.5 billion portfolio investment and recent direct budget support of $600 million to the country. Following suit, the European Union and France, both major contributors to Niger’s economic progress, have declared a suspension of financial support and collaboration with the nation.

Undeterred by these sanctions, General Abdourahamane Tiani exhibited defiance, asserting, “We reject these sanctions altogether and refuse to give in to any threats, wherever they come from”. Such a stance has raised numerous concerns regarding the implications of the sustained military rule on trade, investments, transactions, and businesses within and beyond the challenged African nation.

Impact on Trade and #AfCFTA.

As more countries and international bodies impose stringent sanctions on Niger following the coup, the nation’s economy and investment prospects are poised to suffer significantly. The weight of international sanctions will inevitably hinder Niger’s ability to engage in cross-border trade and further erode its economic stability.

According to the 2023 economic outlook presented by the World Bank, Niger’s real GDP growth is forecasted at 6.9% for the year, with an anticipated upswing to 12.5% in 2024, attributed to economic activities, exports, and sustained donor support. Key trade partners for Niger include Nigeria, France, and China. Beyond the African Union, Niger holds membership in regional blocs such as the Conseil de l’Entente and ECOWAS. The country encourages economic links between African countries, having signed and rectified all three separate agreements of the African Continental Free Trade Area (AfCFTA).

Since the principal beneficiaries of the AfCFTA agreement are SMEs, these series of imposed sanctions on Niger will not only impact trade, foreign investments, and business activities in the country. The consequences are likely to resonate profoundly, impacting the stability of SMEs, hindering their reliable operation, and ultimately impeding the economic strides the country and the AfCTA agreement has made thus far.

Political instability like the Niger coup brings political risk, which could act as a deterrent to investors. Consequently, international businesses are likely to depart Niger, leading to a potential loss of jobs due to reduced economic activity. This exodus could result in diminished access to foreign investment, a decline in foreign currency reserves, and the vulnerability of the nation to exclusion from promising trade opportunities and overall economic growth.