From May 15-17, 2023, a delegation of the Finance Committee of the German Federal Parliament (Deutscher Bundestag) visited Lagos as Nigeria’s economic and financial hub. Committee Chairman Mr. Alois Rainer and four more German Members of Parliament were impressed by their professionally energetic Nigerian counterparts they met and by the many valuable insights gained in a comprehensive two-and-a-half-day programme.
The major focus of the trip was to better understand Nigeria’s economic development and challenges and thus to explore opportunities for increased bilateral cooperation, both in financial and industrial matters. Meeting with financial organisations and experts from the Nigerian Stock Exchange (NGX), headed by CEO Temi Popoola, the Financial Derivatives Company (FDC) of Bismarck Rewane, as well as with the country directors of Deutsche Bank Nigeria, Commerzbank Nigeria and AHK/German Industry & Commerce Nigeria constituted a critical part of the visit.
Another key part of the programme was to visit successful German investments in Nigeria in recent years. The German companies Beiersdorf Nivea Nigeria Ltd. (mainly consumer products for hair and skin care) and BASF West Africa Ltd. (mainly sustainable chemistry in various industrial and consumer applications) gave the delegation impressive tours of their respective Mushin and Ikeja facilities and insight into their operations in all of Nigeria as well as beyond in the West African region.
As news of the very dynamic Lagosian/Nigerian start-up scene had reached German Parliamentarians in recent years, the start-up issue created the third column of the programme. In particular Nigeria’s fintech development is of great interest to Germany, so it led to exciting Q&A sessions as the Finance Committee delegation met with senior management of Flutterwave, Brass, BFree, Edenlife, Payhippo and Pulse.