Minister of State Cornelia Pieper yesterday (20 April) in Berlin expressed her satisfaction with the results of the initial meeting of the German-Nigerian Binational Commission:
“Federal Foreign Minister Westerwelle and his Nigerian counterpart Olugbega Ashiru established the German-Nigerian Binational Commission on 2 December 2011 in Berlin. This Commission held its initial meeting at the Federal Foreign Office on 19 April 2012.I am pleased that the successful consultations there laid another foundation stone for more intensive cooperation with Nigeria.Nigeria is an important partner to Germany, and is a country that fulfils its responsibility for democracy, peace and security in Africa. We want to support Nigeria in these efforts in every way we can.”
The initial meeting took place on 19 April 2012 at the Federal Foreign Office and was jointly chaired by State Secretary Emily Haber and her Nigerian counterpart State Secretary Martin Uhomoibhi.
At the meeting the Commission’s four working groups consulted on their respective areas of focus: energy/electricity, business, policy/security and culture/migration.
During the consultations Germany pledged to support Nigeria in combating the terrorist group Boko Haram and in managing crises in Africa. Regarding the economy, Germany is to assist Nigeria in areas including training in the energy sector, while Nigeria pledged in return to improve investment conditions for German companies. The working groups also discussed migration issues and more intensive academic exchange. Initial results are to be presented at the commission’s plenary meeting in Abuja in summer 2012.