By Fiona Freddy

The United States Department of Commerce and Nigeria’s Ministry of Industry Trade and Investment (MITI) have finalized documents that will formally establish a new bilateral policy instrument focused on trade and investment between Nigeria and the United States.

A statement made available to Journalists on Tuesday, said that, “The U.S.-Nigeria Commercial and Investment Dialogue (CID) is a U.S. Department of Commerce and Nigeria’s Ministry of Industry Trade and Investment-led mechanism designed to promote increased, diverse, and sustained trade and investment between the United States and Nigeria.

“The CID, the newest instrument of U.S. engagement with Nigeria, is different in that it leverages the voice of the private sector in the effort to enhance the bilateral commercial and investment relationship.

“Nigeria’s Minister of Industry Trade and Investment, Dr. Okechukwu Enelemah, signed Nigeria’s portion of the document witnessed by U.S. Deputy Assistant Secretary Seward L. Jones, Jr., while the U.S. Deputy Secretary of State John J. Sullivan signed yesterday on behalf of the United States Government.

“The United States and Nigeria have worked together for several months on the requisite details to establish the CID. The CID will initially focus on infrastructure, agriculture, digital economy, investment, and regulatory reform.

“At the 2016 U.S.-Africa Business Summit in New York, President Muhammadu Buhari announced his support for the CID and Dr. Enelemah has worked tirelessly with many senior officials of the U.S. Department of Commerce to bring about today’s signing.

“The CID is expected to launch in early 2018 at a meeting co-chaired by Secretary Ross and Minister Enelamah.”