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Minister Uzoka-Anite Denies Budgeting N1bn for Geneva Trip

The Minister of Industry, Trade and Investment, Doris Uzoka-Anite, has said reports(not by Concise News) alleging that her office budgeted N1bn for a foreign trip to Geneva are a misrepresentation of the fact.

A statement signed by her Special Assistant on Media, Toluwase Moyan, revealed that the only mention of Geneva in the budget was with respect to the maintenance of the Nigerian Trade Office in Geneva.

This was as her office expressed its commitment to prudence, transparency and accountability.

The statement read in part, “The office of the Honourable Minister of Industry, Trade, and Investment wishes to clarify that media reports of a Foreign Trip to Geneva next year budgeted to cost 1 Billion Naira, is an extreme misrepresentation of the facts.
We wish to categorically state that there is no line item in the proposed budget of the Federal Ministry of Industry, Trade, and Investment referring to ANY “Foreign Trip to Geneva”.

“Rather, the only mention of “Geneva” in the proposed budget is with respect to the maintenance of the Nigerian Trade Office in Geneva, captured as “External Trade Sector, Geneva (WTO)”, which may have been misconstrued as “Foreign Trip to Geneva”.

“In fact, the total amount (for NIGERIA’S TRADE OFFICE IN GENEVA) in the appropriation for 2024 is N1,610,183,599 with the breakdown as follows:

1. Personnel Cost: N805, 379, 820
2. Overhead: N204, 058, 434
3. Capital: N600, 745, 345

“For clarification, Nigeria, as an active player in global trade maintains an office in Geneva responsible for representing and defending Nigeria’s multilateral trade interests in the World Trade Organisation (WTO) and the United Nations Conference on Trade and Development (UNCTAD), both headquartered in Geneva Switzerland.

“Expectedly, the Nigerian Trade Office, Geneva has obligations, overhead and maintenance costs as with any organisation, that must be met. In fact, the current debt owed by the Nigeria Trade Office in Geneva as captured in the budget is N499,000,000.00, and it was deemed necessary to propose a budget that will service Nigeria’s outstanding debts in Geneva and maintain Nigeria’s respect and global standing amongst the comity of nations.

“Please be assured that the Ministry is committed to prudence, transparency and accountability.”

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