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Tinubu meets WTO DG Okonjo-Iweala, Pate at the Villa

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President Bola Tinubu on Tuesday met  with the Director-General of the World Trade Organisation (WTO), Dr Ngozi Okonjo-Iweala, at the Presidential Villa, Abuja.
The WTO DG was accompanied by Dr Ali Pate, one of President Tinubu’s ministers-designate.
“So, this was not really an official WTO mission, but we were able to engage with Mr. President to talk about what are the kinds of programmes that we could that could be put in place to make sure that we we had a conversation on trying to look at community and grassroots programmes that can be put in place to create jobs for young people trying to support women and children who are those who are bearing the brunt of some of the suffering in the country, she said after the meeting.
She said that their conversation with the president centred around formulating approaches to stimulate job creation, foster women’s empowerment, and bolster digital trade within Nigeria’s economy.
She also noted that they also talked about investment for the longer term in several sectors in the country including the pharmaceutical industry.
“We also talked about the what type of support the WTO, the World Trade Organization can bring.
“We are already working in Nigeria with women in particular, who own small and medium enterprises to try to help them upgrade the quality of their products, whether it’s in the agricultural area, textiles, and in other areas so that they can sell more internationally.
“We’re trying to help them with digital trade. The wave of the future is digital trade. So, how do we train and empower Nigerian women and small and medium enterprises throughout the country, create more jobs?
“That’s what’s needed now in Nigerians to alleviate these difficult conditions that they are in. So, that is what we discussed with Mr. President and as the Director General of the World Trade Organization, we’re going to try to do the most we can to support Nigerians at this particular time.”
Also speaking, Pate, a former Chief Executive Officer of GAVI, the global vaccine alliance, corroborated the remarks of the WTO Director General, adding that Tinubu is actively working to ameliorate the suffering of citizens.
He assured that the difficulty is transitory, noting that the president is committed to all invervention measures.
Pate spoke on plans to promote grassroot programmes to support women and youth as well as prioritizing health particularly health insurance, primary health care and hospital care.
“I think I’ll just reaffirm, that Mr. President is fully aware of the difficulties that people are facing, and committed and I think doing all that he can and with his team to ensure that those sufferings are alleviated.
“That was the main thrust of the conversation that we had in terms of targeting those who are most vulnerable, women, children, youth, attracting investment opportunities, that can grow the economy so that people will get some succour because  the difficulties that we’re facing is transitory.
“I think with the vision of the President there’s reason to be very hopeful that we’ll navigate through this difficult time and have a Nigeria that sees us stronger, united and conspired to the greatness that is in our future.
“So Mr. President also discussed with us some of the vision on health that he has and I think is great to see that health is one area where it connects everyone.

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