The Consul-General of the Republic of Korea in Lagos, In-Taek Kim, said on Thursday that 1,424 Nigerians were issued visas to Korea in 2017 and in the first nine months of this year.
In-Taek told the News Agency of Nigeria in Lagos that 942 Nigerians got visas in 2017, while another 484 Nigerians were issued visas between January and September this year.
According to him, there is a growing interest of more Nigerians in travelling to Korea for different purposes.
He said: “Let me say that my office currently covers the 12 states of the South South and the South West of Nigeria.
“My office is really involved in the business of visa issuance to Nigerians.
“Last year, 2017, we issued 942 visas to Nigerians.
“And between January and September of this year, 2018, we have issued visas to 484 Nigerians.
“Nigerians travel to Korea for different purposes, but mostly for businesses, conferences, meetings, training programmes and for academic purposes.”
In-Taek, who said there was also a growing interest of Korean companies and investors in Nigeria, also disclosed his government’s plan to strengthen relations with Nigeria in the years ahead.
The consul-general said his home government was prepared to foster trade between Korea and Nigeria through its agency, the Korean Trade Investment Promotion Agency.
According to him, KOTRA has been facilitating one-on-one contact and interaction between Nigerian and Korean companies, investors and businesses.
Nigeria and Korea established diplomatic relations in 1980.
The volume of trade between Nigeria and Korea that was N954.68 billion in 2017, dropped to N403.8 million between January and August this year.
In 2017, the volume of trade between Nigeria and Korea was $2,622,883,405 (about N954.68 billion).
This represented about a 63 per cent increase over what was recorded in the trade volume in 2016.
But in the last eight months of this year, 2018, between January and August, Nigeria only recorded a trade volume of $1,109,404 (N403.8 million).
Korean exports to Nigeria are: diesel, synthetic resin, jet oil, cars, battery and pharmaceuticals, while Nigeria exports liquefied gas, liquefied petroleum gas, copper and scraps, lead and scraps to Korea.