ArchiveBay.com - www.thechronicleherald.ca/news/west-african-countries-to-investigate-nigeria-border-closure-409118/ - West African countries to investigate Nigeria border closure - World - News - The Chronicle Herald

www.thechronicleherald.ca/news/west-african-countries-to-investigate-nigeria-border-closure-409118/--2020-02-11__14-29-13

West African countries to investigate Nigeria border closure - World - News - The Chronicle Herald

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WEST AFRICAN COUNTRIES TO INVESTIGATE NIGERIA BORDER CLOSURE

Reuters
PUBLISHED: a day ago

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ABUJA (Reuters) - West African countries have agreed to conduct an
investigation into the impact of Nigeria's decision last year to close
off its land borders to trade, Nigeria's presidency said on Monday.

Nigeria has banned the import and export of all goods through its land
borders since last August as part of what it describes as a campaign
to tackle smuggling. Its smaller neighbors, many of whom rely on trade
with Africa's biggest economy, have complained that this has caused
severe hardship.

Heads of state from the Economic Community of West African States
agreed Sunday night to set up a committee "to study and make a full
report on Nigeria's land border closure with her neighbors," said a
statement from a spokesman for Nigerian President Muhammadu Buhari.

There is no timeline for when the report is due, but it is meant to be
completed "as soon as possible," Nigerian Foreign Minister Geoffrey
Onyeama said, according to the statement.

Since taking office in 2015, Buhari has introduced policies aimed at
curbing imports and smuggling, to boost local manufacturing. Buhari
has also been trying to boost revenues after a 2016 recession slashed
income.

The move to shut the borders followed a decision in July to sign
Nigeria up to an African Continental Free Trade Area, a project to
create a $3.4 trillion economic bloc.

(Reporting by Felix Onuah; Writing by Paul Carsten; Editing by Peter
Graff)

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