The UK’s specialised exports are competitive and in high demand in Nigeria The UK exports proportionately more machinery and transport equipment to Nigeria than Germany among the top six non-oil exporters (see Figure 9). Nigeria’s reliance on alternative power generation and its growing need for machinery across the economy drive high demand for independent power supply and transport and industrial machinery in this sector. In particular, in 2014 the UK’s power generation equipment accounted for 23% of UK exports to Nigeria in this sector having grown at 16% per annum over the past 4 years alone.
The UK is also exporting a larger proportion of chemicals and related products than the United States and Germany. This trend is driven by strong local retail demand for UK brands in consumer products such as detergents and cleaning products and industrial chemicals drive this trend. Consumer products account for almost 30% of UK exports to Nigeria in this sector. The following product subsectors are growing at a fast pace of 45% per annum (2010-2014): medical and pharmaceutical products and complex plastics and fertilisers.
The UK’s exports can play an important role in enabling Nigerian growth As Nigeria reforms, its import composition will change. President Buhari’s reforms, discussed in more detail in section 4, are likely to increase self-sufficiency in some industries that currently rely on imports. Agriculture is one such example where 40% of produce is wasted each year due to lack of appropriate warehouses and other infrastructure. Currently, food and live animals make up 16% of Nigerian imports but this is likely to fall as reforms take place. By 2030, we expect Nigeria’s import composition to resemble more closely that of the benchmark countries (see Figure 10). The UK’s exports in know-how and specialised machinery could act as enablers of Nigerian industrial development and diversification. For example, the UK’s specialised construction of buildings with temperature control is likely to improve warehousing and decrease agricultural waste. Similarly, greater use of advanced fertilisers from the UK can improve the local production of agricultural products.