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UK Seeks Tariff Exemption On Solar Equipment

Babajide Iletogun

The United Kingdom has called on the Federal government to consider the issuance of a tariff and duty exemption on solar equipment to accelerate Nigeria’s energy access and low carbon energy transition.

At the meeting attended by the Minister of Industry, Trade and Investment, Otunba Adeniyi Adebayo, Minister of Finance, Budget and National Planning, Mrs Zanaib Ahmed, Comptroller General of the Custom Service, Col Hameed Ali and the United Kingdom Minister of International Trade, Ranil Jayawardena, the Ministers discussed the critical role of foreign direct investment in the Nigeria non-oil economy during the recovery phase from the pandemic, which they agreed was essential to the economies of both countries.

To this extent, a bilateral technical group is expected to be constituted by both countries to review the proposal and report to the Nigeria’s Minister of Industry, Trade and Investment and the Minister of Finance for necessary action.

These were part of the communique issued on Tuesday at the end of the Fifth Ministerial Meeting of the United Kingdom-Nigeria Economic Development Forum (EDF), which was held virtually.

Manufacturing Africa also presented to the ministers the UK’s new investment deals brokered in renewables, waste management and light manufacturing. It was agreed that to sustain this effort, they canvassed the duty exemption on solar equipment as a way to accelerate Nigeria’s energy access.

The meeting agreed that deepening the trade policy relationship between the two countries has the potential to benefit the both countries and therefore promised to consider options for this in future.

Further, they discussed the Generalised Scheme of Preferences (GSP) as the trade policy framework for Nigeria’s trade with the UK and welcomed the UK’s intention to review GSP with the aim of making it more flexible and simpler for partner countries and businesses to use.

The meeting singled out the approval of the Nigeria National Quality Policy (NNQP) by the Federal Executive Council as a key milestone in Nigeria’s ambition to diversify its export, including capacity enhancement activities for Standards Organisation of Nigeria and non-oil exports facilitated by the UK in the first quarter of 2021

“The UK welcomed Nigeria’s commitment to disseminate the outputs of the capacity building across all trade-related agencies”, the communique read.
The Ministers were pleased with the progress made by the legal services technical working group presented by its co-chairs. They agreed that a framework for the legal services partnership can set the foundations for future cooperation in other professional services areas.

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