Writer: ABHUIMHEN THERESA
The recent moves to lift visa ban on Nigerian travelers by the United Arab Emirates (UAE) has sparked optimism and promising business prospects for Nigeria.
This development follows negotiations between President Bola Tinubu and his UAE counterpart, Mohamed bin Zayed Al Nahyan, which is expectedly would result in a historic agreement.
As part of the agreement, both Etihad Airlines and Emirates Airlines will promptly resume flights to and from Nigeria.
This is significant as it would restore vital air connectivity between the two countries.
The lifting of the visa ban is expected to catalyze economic growth in Nigeria. It will enable Nigerians with businesses in the UAE to resume their operations, potentially leading to increased trade and investments between the two nations.
President Tinubu’s economic development diplomacy efforts have paved the way for several billion dollars’ worth of new investments in Nigeria across various sectors.
This includes defense, agriculture, and other areas, thanks to the investment arms of the UAE government.
Interestingly, both countries are actively working on a new foreign exchange (forex) liquidity program. This program will facilitate smoother financial transactions and foster economic cooperation.
Impact on Business and Tourism:
1) Business Opportunities: Nigerian businesses that were adversely affected by the ban can now resume normal operations in the UAE. This includes various sectors such as agriculture, tourism, and trade, which are poised to benefit from renewed opportunities.
2) Tourism: The restoration of flights and easier travel access will likely boost tourism between the two countries. Nigerians can once again explore the attractions of the UAE, and UAE tourists can visit Nigeria.
3) Trade and Investments: With improved diplomatic ties and business-friendly initiatives, there is potential for increased foreign direct investment (FDI) in Nigeria. This influx of capital can contribute to the country’s economic development.
The lifting of the UAE visa ban represents a significant turning point in Nigeria’s international relations and economic growth prospects. It not only restores essential travel and business links but also opens the door to substantial investments across multiple sectors.
As President Tinubu continues to encourage diplomatic ties and secure beneficial agreements, Nigeria stands to benefit immensely from this renewed collaboration with the UAE.