The objective of this Initiative is to use the global platform of the Nigerian Ministry of Foreign Affairs through its existing 114 Embassies and Missions, to match Nigerian businesses with business opportunities around the world. This is expected to boost both inward and outward trade and investment.
The Matching Initiative is not intended to replace any of the different existing initiatives. Rather, it will make them more effective by affording them a platform for wider reach, using existing infrastructure.To be effective, the Initiative must be simple, self-perpetuating, cost efficient/neutral, and results-driven.
Many Nigerian businesses lack ready access to reliable sources for identifying potential business partners overseas. Specifically, Nigerian small and medium sized enterprises (SMEs) lack the resources to advertise internationally.
Additionally, Nigerian businesses encounter credibility biases when making cold calls on prospective international partners. The cost of overcoming these biases adds to the cost of doing business, which in turn makes such companies less competitive on the global stage.
Providing a platform for global exposure of genuine Nigerian businesses and reducing credibility bias against them, would not only stimulate job creation and economic growth in Nigeria, but more specifically, provide international platform for businesses in parts of the country away from the established commercial and industrialized centers.
Presently, there is no unified platform for matching Nigerian businesses with global opportunities for inward and outward trade and investments.
The different entities currently involved in pushing Nigerian businesses internationally include: the Ministries of Trade and Investment; Solid Minerals; Agriculture, and Commerce; as well as the Nigerian Investment Promotion Council (NIPC), which is focused on inward investments, and the Nigerian Export Promotion Council (NEPC), which is focused on exports. Industry and professional organizations and Chambers of Commerce are also involved in trying to assist Nigerian businesses make overseas connections, in addition to the individual efforts of businesses, especially through international trade fairs and events