Benedict Peters February 28, 2017

Africa's strongest bridges won't be made from steel and stone

Last week the Nigerian government announced plans to construct a new border bridge between Cameroon and Nigeria in order to strengthen the bilateral ties between our two countries. With attitudes and actions within world trade undergoing a fundamental shift, it got me thinking about the virtual bridges Africa must continue to build: the relationships we keep with other countries.

Last year brought us two seismic upsets in the geopolitical status-quo. First, in the summer the world was surprised by the United Kingdom's decision to leave the European Union, the economic and trading zone it had been part of since the 1970s. Shortly afterwards, similar surprise was expressed when a populist celebrity with no political track record, Donald Trump, was elected President of the United States. Quite aside from the political shift this may represent, both countries have since expressed a fervent interest in exploring new trade relationships. This is something that Nigeria, indeed all of Africa, is well-placed to benefit from.

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