President Muhammadu Buhari will on Saturday leave Abuja on an official working visit to the United States of America, on the invitation of President Donald Trump.
According to a statement on Friday by his Special Adviser on Media and Publicity, Mr. Femi Adesina, the President will hold a bilateral meeting with Trump and a working lunch on Monday.
According to the statement, the meeting between the two leaders would discuss ways to enhance the strategic partnership between the two countries and to advance shared priorities, such as: promoting economic growth, fighting terrorism and other threats to peace and security.
“The meeting will further deepen the US-Nigeria relationship as the United States considers Nigeria’s economic growth, security and leadership in Africa to be critical aspects of their strategic partnership,” the statement read.
Adesina added that Buhari would later in the day meet with a group of business persons in agriculture and agro-processing, dairy and animal husbandry.
He said ahead of the visit, meetings have been scheduled on April 26 and 27 27 between senior Nigerian government officials and executives of major US companies in the areas of agriculture, aviation and transportation.
The statement added, “In the area of aviation, the Nigerian officials will be meeting with Boeing, the largest aircraft manufacturer in the world, on the National Carrier Project.
“On agriculture, they will meet with large equipment manufacturers with focus on harvesting and post harvesting equipment.
“In the area of transportation, the officials will meet with the GE-led consortium for the implementation of the interim phase of the narrow gauge rail concession.
“In the interim phase, a substantive concession agreement will be negotiated and finalized to provide the consortium the opportunity to invest an estimated $2bn, to modernize the rail line from Lagos to Kano (Western Line) and from Port Harcourt to Maiduguri (Eastern Line). During the meeting, the concession framework and the interim phase framework agreements are expected to be signed.
“The Nigerian officials will also meet with US-EXIM Bank and the US Overseas Private Investment Corporation to explore competitive financing arrangements.”
Adesina added that that in 2017, Nigeria’s Ministry of Industry, Trade and Investment and the United States Department of Commerce signed a Memorandum of Understanding to promote and encourage commercial and investment ties between Nigeria and the US, with initial focus on infrastructure, agriculture, digital economy, investment and regulatory reforms.