A meeting took place today (18 April) at the Federal Foreign Office between representatives of the Nigerian Government, the German Government and German industry. The purpose of the talks was to prepare the ground for German-Nigerian cooperation agreements with a view to intensifying the energy partnership between the two countries.
The talks are part of the process initiated by Federal Foreign Minister Frank-Walter Steinmeier when he visited Nigeria in August 2007. During the visit President Yar'Adua and Minister Steinmeier agreed on closer cooperation in the energy sector. The plan is for German energy supply companies to invest in Nigerian natural gas production and also help expand and develop the country's energy infrastructure.
This was the rationale behind the first German-Nigerian energy conference held on 20 October 2007 in the Nigerian capital of Abuja. At today's talks the German delegation was headed by Mr Heinrich Tiemann, State Secretary of the Federal Foreign Office, and the Nigerian delegation by Dr Rilwanu Lukman, Adviser to the Nigerian President on Energy Matters.
Nigeria has the eleventh largest energy reserves in the world and is the eighth largest petroleum exporter. Despite its huge energy resources, however, its energy infrastructure remains inadequate. German companies can help remedy these deficits – also by rapidly constructing new installations that will utilize renewable sources of energy.