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Thursday, 07 December 2017

Nigeria the number one destination for Irish exports out to Africa

The majority of Irish exports to Africa went to Nigeria in September this year. An EU-Africa summit takes place in the Ivory Coast this week. The crisis at home means Taoiseach Leo Varadkar didn't go, but attendees included French President Emmanuel Macron and German Chancellor Angela Merkel. Boosting trade, security and investment were all on the agenda. Irish trade with Africa is increasing. Businesses here sent €23m in exports to Nigeria during the month, according to figures from the Central Statistics Office (CSO). Nigeria was followed by South Africa, which accounted for €21m of Irish exports in September, and Algeria (€8.9m). Exports include food and drink, software and engineering. In 2013 there were approximately 70 Enterprise Ireland clients exporting to Nigeria alone. On the reverse side, Irish imports from Africa during the month of September were largely from Nigeria, which accounted for €32m of Irish imports from Africa. Guinea was next, with €11m of imports coming from the west African country. South Africa completed the top three, accounting for €9.3m worth of imports i in September. Commodities imported from Africa include oil and cocoa. Meanwhile, trade between Europe and Africa has decreased slightly over the last ten years. In 2006, Africa accounted for 8.4pc of European Union trade and was the bloc's third main trading partner. However, last year Africa was the fourth most important trading partner behind the United States, China and Switzerland, accounting for 7.5pc of total extra-EU trade in goods in 2016.