The federal government has announced the reopening of certain state borders, including Idiroko in Ogun State, Jibiya in Katsina State, Kamba in Kenni State and Ikom in Cross River. 

Driving the news 
The reopening of Nigeria’s land borders opens the country to international trade with fellow West African countries and other countries on the continent.

Brief background to the story 
In August 2019, President Muhammadu Buhari ordered the closure of Nigeria’s land borders due to the increased rates of illegal importation of drugs, arms and agricultural produce into the country from neighboring countries. 

  • Barely a month after Nigeria ratified the AfCFTA agreement in November 2020, the federal government ordered the reopening of land borders at Seme in Lagos, Illela in Sokoto, Maigatari in Jigawa and Mfum in Cross River. 
  • Other borders were closed due to the coronavirus lockdowns. 

What this means 

  • Reopening of Nigeria’s borders would foster the growth of African Continental Free Trade Area (AfCFTA), an African project aimed at encouraging intra-African trade and boosting Africa’s 2% contribution to the world’s global trade.
  • The reopening of land borders would increase the ease of SMEs conducting business in border communities as the burden and financial cost of transporting products into states without inland container depot lessens.
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