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Nigerian foreign minister due in Moscow for energy talks

  Nigerian Foreign Minister Ojo Maduekwe will arrive in Moscow on Monday on a three-day visit to discuss bilateral energy and metals projects with his Russian counterpart Sergei Lavrov.

The foreign ministers are to discuss on Tuesday “implementing major projects in the energy sphere, the ferrous and nonferrous metals industry and other sectors,” Russian Foreign Ministry spokesman Andrei Nesterenko told RIA Novosti.

During the visit, the sides are also due to analyze a package of intergovernmental agreements aimed at boosting bilateral “business and humanitarian contacts.”

The international agenda for the visit will include the overall situation in Africa, UN reform, international security, as well as international efforts to overcome the global financial crisis.

The Nigerian foreign minister will also attend the third plenary session of the Russian-Nigerian commission for economic and scientific-technical cooperation, Nesterenko said.

Russian-Nigerian bilateral trade doubled in 2008 to $300 million, making Nigeria Russia’s second largest trading partner in Africa. Resource-rich Nigeria has seen numerous abductions of foreign employees in recent years, including of Russian aluminum giant RusAl. The Russian company has a 77.5 % controlling stake in the Alscon plant in Nigeria. (