UBA, Japan Trade Office Collaborate to Promote MSMEs in Africa

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Chairman/CEO, Japan External Trade Organization (JETRO), Mr. Hiroyuki Ishige and Chairman, United Bank for Africa(UBA) Plc, Mr. Tony Elumelu, during the talk between JETRO and UBA to promote medium and small scale enterprises across Africa, in Lagos on Monday

United Bank for Africa (UBA) Plc has indicated its readiness to support the Japanese government in its drive to promote Small and Medium Scale Enterprises across Africa.

The Chairman, UBA Group, Mr. Tony Elumelu, indicated this on Monday, when the members of the Japan External Trade Organisation (JETRO), led by its CEO, Mr. Hiroyuki Ishige, were hosted at a cocktail at the UBA House, in Lagos, Nigeria.

Elumelu who welcomed the guests, noted that the deliberations had earlier begun in Davos, Switzerland, adding that like UBA, JETRO shared the passion for transforming lives and helping to build businesses and trade across the world.

According to Elumelu, “When global leaders visit a country, they bring global attention. These investors who came from Davos have seen Nigeria as a business destination and have come to the country for the first time to visit us and see how things work here. The fact is that we all share the same passion to help transform lives and businesses around the world’.

Continuing, Elumelu said to the Japanese delegation, “We are aware of the various investments you have made recently to develop Africa and African businesses and this is what we also stand for at UBA, developing enterprises across the African continent. We believe that this visit will mark  significant milestones and progress as we work towards empowering the youths and small and medium scale businesses.”

Elumelu stated that collaborations and partnerships such as these will help towards employment creation, poverty alleviation and building sustainable businesses that contribute towards economic growth.

Ishige who was full of praises for the bank’s management, noted that he found Nigeria very interesting with many wonderful opportunities for investment.

He remarked that JETRO aims to contribute to further development of Japan’s economy and society through promoting trade and investment as well as research in developing countries. “We like what we have seen here and we want to seize this opportunity to invite UBA to our oncoming Afro Japanese Summit which will be taking place in Yokohoma, Japan this August.

“I am convinced it will be a great opportunity for both countries to showcase themselves and come together towards the common aim of building and supporting small and medium scale businesses,” the Japan Trade boss said.

He explained that JETRO through its domestic and oversea networks supports   small and medium enterprises, adding that the organisation cooperates with relevant organizations, local governments, etc. to provide services that match the needs of the company.

As a company, the Japan Trade organisation fully utilizes domestic and overseas networks consisting of about 50 domestic bases, promotes investment, agriculture, forestry and fishery products.

“We will actively and efficiently work on exporting food products and on supporting overseas expansion of small and medium-sized enterprises,  and contribute to Japanese corporate activities as well as trade policies through surveys and research,” Ishige said.

l-r: Deputy Group Managing Director, United Bank for Africa(UBA) Plc, Mr. Victor Osadolor; Group Managing Director/CEO, UBA Plc, Mr. Kennedy Uzoka; Chairman/CEO, Japan External Trade Organization (JETRO), Mr. Hiroyuki Ishige; Chairman, UBA Plc, Mr. Tony Elumelu; and Senior Director for Global Strategy, JETRO, Mr. Makoto Matsumura during the cocktail reception in honour of visiting JETRO executives and Japanese businesses and discussions on supporting medium and small scale enterprises across Africa in Lagos on Monday

United Bank for Africa Plc is a leading pan-African financial services group, with operations in 20 African countries, as well as the United Kingdom, the United States of America and presence in France. UBA was incorporated in Nigeria as a limited liability company after taking over the assets of the British and French Bank Limited who had been operating in Nigeria since 1949.  The United Bank for Africa merged with Standard Trust Bank in 2005 and from a single country operation founded in 1949 in Nigeria – Africa’s largest economy – UBA has become one of the leading providers of banking and other financial services on the African continent.  The Bank provides services to over15 million customers globally, through one of the most diverse service channels in sub-Saharan Africa, with over 1,000 branches, customer touch points and robust online and mobile banking platforms.

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