Nigeria–Pakistan relations

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Pakistan-Nigeria relations
Map indicating locations of Pakistan and Nigeria


Defence attachés from Pakistan and Russia visit the communications tent at the Nigerian Air Force Base, Abuja, Nigeria, on July 21, 2008, during Africa Endeavor 2008.

Nigeria–Pakistan relations refers to the bilateral relations between the nations of Pakistan and Nigeria. Pakistan has a High Commission in Abuja and Nigeria has an embassy in Islamabad, as well as a Consulate-General in Karachi. Pakistani government plans to open trade mission in Lagos, while Nigeria was expected to open its trade mission in Karachi.[1] The two states have maintained a close relationship, a relationship which is described by the Nigerian Defence Minister as "friendly" and like a "family tie"[2]

Country Comparison[edit]

Common Name Nigeria Pakistan
Official Name Federal Republic of Nigeria Islamic Republic of Pakistan
Coat of Arms Coat of arms of Nigeria.svg State emblem of Pakistan.svg
Flag Nigeria Pakistan
Area 923,768 km² (356,669 sq mi) 881,913 km² (340,509 sq mi)
Population 190,886,311 (2017)[3] 209,970,000 (2017)[4]
Population Density 215/km² (556.8/sq mi) 244.4/km² (633/sq mi)
Capital Abuja Islamabad
Largest Metropolitan Area Lagos (16,060,303) Karachi (14,910,352)[5]
Government Federal Presidential Republic Federal Parliamentary Constitutional Republic
Current Leader Muhammadu Buhari Arif Alvi
Official Languages English Urdu
GDP (nominal) $397 Billion $324.73 Billion (2018)[6]
GDP (PPP) $1.169 Trillion $1.141 Trillion (2018)[7]
GDP (nominal) per Capita $2,050 $1,650
GDP (PPP) per Capita $6,030 $5,374
Human Development Index 0.532 (Low) Increase 0.562 (Medium) Increase
Military Expenditures $2.15 Billion $9.6 Billion[8]


Relations between Pakistan and Nigeria are friendly, affable and strong. In January 2009, Nigeria's Minister of Defense, Shittima Musa, announced that "Nigeria and Pakistan would continue to maintain closer relations" and stated that the two countries have also declared to forge closer military ties, especially in the areas of military training and transfer of technology.[9]

Nigeria and Pakistan are both members of the Organisation of Islamic Cooperation.

Diplomatic Relations[edit]


Nigeria and Pakistan have a number of bilateral agreements. Among the most significant, they agreed to cooperation on law enforcement, particularly with regards to narcotics shipping[10] The presidents met in New York at the United Nations headquarters prior to a session of the General Assembly in September 2004.[11]

However, defence is the area in which both countries are most keen to develop their relations. Indeed, in January 2009, the Nigerian Defence Minister vowed to further develop their relationship after a visit by the Pakistani High Commissioner.[12]

Economic Relations[edit]

Bilateral trade between Nigeria and Pakistan reached US$56 million in 2010. Pakistan exported $37million worth of goods to Nigeria while it imported $19 million worth of goods from the Nigeria. Pakistan main export items included textile garments, home appliances, surgical equipment and rice.[13]

The two nations maintain good trade relations, with visits by trade delegations, including a significant visit from Nigeria to the Islamabad Chamber of Commerce in order to hold talks with the Chamber's President. In the talks, the two parties discussed an increase in bilateral trade and the possibility of entering into joint ventures, such as in textiles, pharmaceuticals and other areas in order to increase the volume of trade between the two.[14][15]

A similar meeting took place in December 2005, where the leader of the delegation stated that "active co-operation in trade was imperative to increase the trade volume of the two sides".[16] Other meetings were conducted in January 2006[17] and, more recently and more significantly, March 2008, in which diplomats emphasised the importance of increasing bilateral trade- at the time of the meeting, Pakistan's exports to Nigeria stood at US$23.2 million, whereas, in the same period, imports from Nigeria were around US$10 million[18]

Trade and Investment[edit]

2007 2008 2009 2010 2011 2012 2013 2014 2015 2016
Nigeria Nigeria Exports Nil $42.9 M Increase $24.9 M Decrease $38.2 M Increase $18.6 M Decrease $24.4 M Increase $39.9 M Increase $40.9 M Increase $47.7 M Increase $79.4 M Increase
Pakistan Pakistan Exports Nil $96.2 M Increase $151 M Increase $232 M Increase $172 M Decrease $88.6 M Decrease $117 M Increase $116 M Decrease $87 M Decrease $36.9 M Decrease
Total Trade Nil $139.1 M Increase $175.9 M Increase $270.2 M Increase $190.6 M Decrease $113 M Decrease $156.9 M Increase $156.9 M Steady $154.7 M Decrease $116.3 M Decrease
Note: All values are in U.S. dollars.[19][20]

Security Relations[edit]

Throughout the relationship, meetings have taken place between the defence ministries of Pakistan and Nigeria, including those between Defence Ministers themselves and high-ranking military officials. For example, in June 2008, Nigeria's Admiral G.T.A. Adekeye, the chief of Nigeria's naval staff held talks with the Pakistani Defence Secretary.[21] Perhaps of greater significance, the then head of the Nigerian Army met with then Pakistani president Pervez Musharraf in September 2004, with the objective of "[enhancing] existing excellent relations enjoyed between the two armies"[22]

With the close ties of the two nations and Pakistan's nuclear capability, there has been consideration given to the possibility of Nigeria purchasing nuclear arms. In the Pakistani chairman of joint chiefs of staff said "[Pakistan] is working out the dynamics of how they can assist Nigeria's armed forces to strengthen its military capability and to acquire nuclear power", a statement which proved somewhat controversial, particularly in Washington, D.C., where members of the Bush administration were reportedly "baffled".[23][24]
The statement regarding nuclear cooperation was later retracted, with a spokesman for the Pakistani Interior Ministry claiming it was "incorrect" and that nuclear weapons were not intended to be a part of the offer[25][26] and Nigeria has since denied it is seeking a nuclear capability.[27]

More recently, a Pakistani Government advisor has said that the involvement of the Pakistani military in Nigeria was important for the latter's stability, with Nigerian officers being sent to Pakistan for training.[28]

Defense ministers of both Pakistan and Nigeria have also signed a Memorandum of Undersigned (MoU) to enhance defence collaboration[29]

Pakistan has supported Nigeria in its fight against Boko Haram, it supplied the Nigerian military with armored tanks and other advanced military hardware.[30]


  1. ^ "Nigeria 'll be Africa's economic power by 2030 if". Retrieved 17 April 2017.
  2. ^ Auta, Benjamin (4 February 2008). "Nigeria: Minister Hails Nigeria-Pakistan Ties". Retrieved 17 April 2017 – via AllAfrica.
  3. ^ "Nigeria Population (LIVE)", Worldometers
  4. ^ "". External link in |title= (help)
  5. ^ "PROVISIONAL SUMMARY RESULTS OF 6TH POPULATION AND HOUSING CENSUS-2017". Pakistan Bureau of Statistics. Retrieved 21 October 2017.
  6. ^
  7. ^ "World Economic Outlook Database, April 2018".
  8. ^
  9. ^ "Nigeria, Pakistan vow to forge closer military ties_English_Xinhua". 2009-01-28. Retrieved 2010-04-01.
  10. ^ " - newspaper archive, clipping service - newspapers and other news sources". 1998-09-19. Retrieved 2010-04-01.
  11. ^ "Article: Musharraf meets President of Nigerian and President of UN General Assembly. | AccessMyLibrary - Promoting library advocacy". AccessMyLibrary. 2004-09-24. Retrieved 2010-04-01.
  12. ^ [1]
  13. ^ "The Nation Newspaper Nigeria - Read Latest Nigeria News". Retrieved 17 April 2017.
  14. ^ "Article: BUSINESS (Nigerian Trade Delegation visits ICCI). | AccessMyLibrary - Promoting library advocacy". AccessMyLibrary. 2003-10-29. Retrieved 2010-04-01.
  15. ^ "Leading News Resource of Pakistan". Daily Times. 2003-10-28. Retrieved 2010-04-01.
  16. ^ "Article: Nigeria delegation seeking investment opportunities in Pakistan. | AccessMyLibrary - Promoting library advocacy". AccessMyLibrary. 2005-12-23. Retrieved 2010-04-01.
  17. ^ "Article: Distt (Sialkot): Nigerian High Commissioner visits SCCI. | AccessMyLibrary - Promoting library advocacy". AccessMyLibrary. 2006-01-17. Retrieved 2010-04-01.
  18. ^ "Article: PAKISTAN, NIGERIA DISCUSS INCREASING ECONOMIC COOPERATION. | AccessMyLibrary - Promoting library advocacy". AccessMyLibrary. 2008-03-06. Retrieved 2010-04-01.
  19. ^
  20. ^
  21. ^ " - newspaper archive, clipping service - newspapers and other news sources". 2008-06-17. Retrieved 2010-04-01.
  22. ^ "Article: Nigerian Army Chief calls on President. | AccessMyLibrary - Promoting library advocacy". AccessMyLibrary. 2005-09-24. Retrieved 2010-04-01.
  23. ^ Julian Borger in Washington (2004-03-04). "Pakistan may make Nigeria a nuclear power | World news". London: The Guardian. Retrieved 2010-04-01.
  24. ^ "Pakistan offers nuke to Nigeria". 2004-03-04. Retrieved 2010-04-01.
  25. ^ "Nigeria denies Pakistan offer included n-power". The Hindu. 2004-03-05. Retrieved 2010-04-01.
  26. ^ "Nigeria's claim on nuclear aims a 'typo'". 2004-03-04. Retrieved 2010-04-01.
  27. ^ "Nigeria Denies Nuclear Ambitions - AP Online | HighBeam Research - FREE trial". 2004-03-05. Retrieved 2010-04-01.[dead link]
  28. ^ "Nigeria: We Have Trained a Lot of Officers - Pakistani Defence Minister". 2008-10-11. Retrieved 2010-04-01.
  29. ^ "Pakistan, Nigeria vow to promote Defence Ties". Retrieved 17 April 2017.
  30. ^ "Saudi Arabia bars Nigerian planes carrying Pakistani arms - Times of India". Retrieved 17 April 2017.

Further reading[edit]