Buhari departs Russia after attending Africa Economic Summit (image courtesy: State House)

President Muhammadu Buhari on Friday departed Sochi, Russia, after attending the Russia-Africa Economic Summit.

Concise News understands that the forum held from October 23 to October 25.

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Buhari had participated at the three-day event with the governors of Gombe, Zamfara and Ekiti States, the Minister of Foreign Affairs, Geoffrey Onyeama, Group Managing Director of the Nigeria National Petroleum Corporation, Mele Kyari and others.

During the summit, Buhari participated in the Russia-Africa Summit, focusing on exploring and expanding opportunities in security, trade and investment, science and technology, and gas production.

The president also met with President Vladimir Putin of Russia to further strengthen relations between Nigeria and Russia.

The two leaders held bilateral talks on security, trade and investment, and building partnership aimed at enhancing Nigeria’s huge gas potential.

Also, the NNPC signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) with Russia’s Lukeoil to elevate commercial relationship to a government-to-government backed partnership.

The signing ceremony, which took place on the sidelines of the Russia-Africa Summit, was witnessed by the Minister of State for Petroleum, Timipre Sylva.

This news medium understands that the signing of the MoU will allow the NNPC and Lukeoil to work together in upstream operations and revamp Nigeria’s refineries.

Group Managing Director of NNPC, Mele Kyari and Vagit Alekperov, President of leading Russian oil company, Lukeoil, signed the MoU, which entails cooperation in deep offshore exploration of oil in Nigeria, production, trading and refining.

Earlier in his remarks at a meeting with Russian President Vladimir Lenin, President Muhammadu Buhari said Nigeria was prepared and willing to work with Russian businesses “to improve the efficiency of our oil and gas sector which provides us with the much-needed capital to invest in our security, infrastructure and economic diversification programmes”.

While taking note of the agreement between NNPC and Lukeoil, President Buhari gave an assurance that his administration will “ensure this initiative is implemented within the shortest possible time.”