Alpár Kató | Feb 20, 2019 | 1
Hungarian cultural and economic centre opened in Nigeria
HTCC is providing services to entrepreneurs looking for opportunities on a global scale. They also cultivate cultural and educational activities with partner countries to bring Hungarian culture to different parts of the world. They help their partners to become familiar with and be prepared for unique circumstances of unknown markets, especially in Africa and Asia.
Nigeria is the most populated country in Africa and nowadays its economy is larger than even that of South Africa’s. The most important industry in the country is oil extraction and processing, but manufacturing is getting more profitable.
The middle class is getting more and more powerful, following European trends in consumption. Nigeria is also a front-runner in West Africa’s democratic transformation, its government is working hard on ending corruption and spreading peace and safety on an international level in the whole region. Read our previous article about the Africa expo here.
The pitfalls of opening a branch in Nigeria
For many foreign companies, having a presence in Nigeria is a smart business decision, but not without its pitfalls. Moving to Nigeria is not easy: Lagos is still considered one of the most dangerous cities in the world. And it is not just pickpockets you need to worry about. You need to be very careful in the business world too. The number of forged documents in unbelievably high. From high school graduation certificates, through diplomas, all the way to every kind of official documents, there are gangs who specialize in forging almost everything. Sophisticated-looking Nigerian criminals, with great English language skills and experience in business matters, have made the Nigerian scam an internationally known and feared phenomenon.
All this means that when someone is planning to do business in Nigeria, they need serious help. They would need someone who has knowledge of the local conditions, someone who can give advice on how to navigate the waters and how to avoid those pitfalls.
We had the help of Omotunde Komolafe, the local partner of HTCC, in creating the branch in Lagos. Fortunately for us, he knows everything there is to know about both Nigeria and Hungary. He has been living in Hungary for years now and working on strengthening the economic and cultural relations between Hungary and Nigeria. He has won the Iroko Award, which is given to individuals who help Africa from Hungary.
Their first office opened its doors in Morocco, 2013. Since then further centres have started their operation in Botswana, China, Ghana, Malawi, Thailand and Uganda. With the opening of the Dubai office, they have a vital presence in the Persian Gulf since 2015. They also have a presence in Belgium, Ethiopia, Florida, Gambia, India, Iraq and now in Nigeria.
Featured image: www.facebook.com/HTCC