By Jean Ambele
Abuja – The Israeli Deputy Ambassador to Nigeria, Nadav Goren has reassured a steady promotion of business and economic ties with Nigeria to improve people-to-people relations between both countries.
Goren, who spoke to the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) in Abuja on Tuesday, said that the relationship between both countries was not religious, but economic and trade.
“ Most may think the Israel-Nigeria relationship is based on tourism through the pilgrimage programmes but it is not that at all, in fact, Israel tries to work and maintain a relationship with Nigeria without looking at religion.
“ Israel is focused on helping Nigeria attain economic development, so we have continued to train professionals and share our vast knowledge in key areas with Nigerians to attain this development.
“There are many Israelis in Nigeria, who manage and operate companies that focus on agriculture, water management and security which we feel are key for Nigeria’s development, especially as the Nigerian government has stressed on the agricultural sector.’’
Goren said that Israel had been able to manage its scarce resources by carrying out researches that could be beneficial to Nigeria.
“Israel is a humble country with a population of about eight million people and we are known not to be blessed with natural resources, however, that has pushed us to research ways to recreate and manage the little resources we have.
“Israelis are now known as people who create opportunities in adversity, so it will be right to say we have been blessed with knowledge and will continue to share this knowledge with Nigeria.
“A classic example of the knowledge development of Israel is in our water management technology.
“Israel is known to have two-thirds of its land as arid causing us to struggle with water which led to a struggle with vegetation and agriculture.
“We carried out studies on ways to solve the problem and manage water and we were successful with it bringing about the water management technology we are sharing with Nigeria now.
“We know there are some parts of Nigeria that are struggling with similar conditions and those regions will benefit from this technology,’’ he said.
The ambassador also said that the Israeli Government had made provisions to introduce Nigeria to their water management technology in order to help Nigeria manage agriculture and water scarcity.
“In September, we had a delegation of senior government officials from Nigeria attend the 2017 Water Technology and Environmental Control Exhibition & Conference (WATEC) in Israel.
“We needed the delegates to see first-hand how the technology came about and how it works so that it could be properly replicated in Nigeria.
“This water management technology goes hand in hand with our focus on the agricultural sector as water is fundamental for successful agriculture which is something we have also been successful with and are proud of.
“The Nigerian Government has stressed on its plan to develop the Nigerian agricultural sector so we are happy to support the government with the necessary knowledge and technology to attain that.
“These are measures we are taking to strengthen the relationship between our countries.’’
NAN reports that the Israeli Government is also taking steps to contribute to the improvement of the education, health and energy sectors in Nigeria.
The Israeli Embassy in Nigeria did not celebrate its 2017 national day as officials decided to donate the funds for the celebration to the Internally Displaced Persons (IDPs) camps in Adamawa.
The embassy organised a football tournament for the children in the camps and awarded a one-year full scholarship to 225 children as part of efforts to support the children and expressed the hope to continue such humanitarian gestures.