South Africa, Nigeria mend relations and agree trade deals
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Johannesburg - South Africa and Nigeria
signed 30 trade and cooperation agreements on Thursday, weeks
after a wave of violence against Nigerian nationals in
Johannesburg and Pretoria had strained relations between
Africa's top two economies.
In September, mobs armed with makeshift weapons attacked
businesses and homes owned by foreigners, leading to at least 10
deaths, dozens of injuries and up to 400 arrests.
In response Nigeria repatriated around 600 of its citizens
living in South Africa.
Presidents Cyril Ramaphosa and Muhammadu Buhari, at the
conclusion of a two-day visit by the Nigerian leader, said they
regretted the violence and subsequent retaliation in Nigeria
against South African businesses, pledging instead to deepen
The local units of South African telecoms company MTN
and supermarket chain Shoprite closed all
stores and service centres in Nigeria after their premises were
attacked by Nigerians protesting against attacks on their
compatriots in South Africa.
"As the government of South Africa, we have expressed our
deep regret at the attacks directed at foreign nationals and our
condemnation of all forms of intolerance and acts of violence,"
Ramaphosa told journalists.
Ramaphosa said the two countries had sealed 32 bilateral
agreements and memoranda of understanding covering trade and
industry, science and technology, defence, agriculture and
Nigeria accounts for 64 percent of South Africa’s total
trade with the West African Region and is one of its largest
trading partners on the continent.
Buhari said beyond the economic partnership the
anti-foreigner violence had to be addressed quickly.
"We decided to take concrete measures to prevent the
recurrence of such unacceptable incidents in the future," Buhari