South Africa and Nigeria have a duty to lead industrialisation in Africa, considering the low levels of beneficiation on the natural resources that the two countries are endowed with, Acting High Commissioner of South Africa to the Nigeria, Bobby Moroe, said on Friday.

He was speaking at the Nigeria-South Africa Business Forum in Lagos, Nigeria.

The Department of Trade and Industry (DTI) said that Moroe said the Nigerian market remained a lucrative option for both trade and investment opportunities for South Africa.

“Therefore, closer cooperation on bilateral and regional issues is key. This is evident by a number of agreements which were negotiated and signed since the establishment of the Bi-National Committee, which included the Bilateral Trade Agreement, the Reciprocal Promotion and Protection of Investment Agreements and the Avoidance of Double Taxation Agreement,” Moroe was quoted as saying.

DTI said that the Lagos Chamber of Commerce and Industry vice chairperson, Soboma Ajumogobia, said that although the two countries have been trading partners, the terms of trade had “unequal and that more work could be done by the two countries to ensure Africa’s self-sufficiency”.

“Africa needs to rely on itself to make sure that it can develop its economy sustainably. This trade mission will enable us to exchange views, expertise and experiences that will aid not only the development of Nigeria and South Africa, but that of the continent as a whole,” he said.