As part of forging closer ties between Africa and countries of the European Union, Denmark is partnering with Nigeria in the area of migration. Currently, most of western and southern Europe is dealing with a massive inflow of refugees, asylum seekers and irregular/economic migrants from the Middle East, Asia and Africa – with Nigeria among the top source countries for illegal migration.
Ambassador of Denmark to Nigeria, Torben A. Gettermann, and Director of Consular Affairs and Migration of the Federal Ministry of Foreign Affairs signed a declaration on “closer cooperation” between both countries on December 18, International Migrants Day.
The bilateral arrangement is to find comprehensive solutions that will address migration, mobility and combating irregular entry. It will also look at ensuring the safe and dignified return of citizens, who have no legal stay in either Denmark or Nigeria.
Negotiations are set to begin early 2018.
Denmark (population: 5.7 million) re-opened its embassy in Abuja and launched its Consular offices in Lagos in early 2016, with Ambassador Gettermann at the helm of affairs.
Migration policy forms part of a broader range of interests the Scandinavian country shares with Nigeria, including trade and economic development, humanitarian assistance in the northeast, and human rights issues.
In terms of people working illegally in Denmark, it was estimated by the country’s Rockwool Foundation Research Unit in 2013 that about 30 percent were from Nigeria and China, the top two countries for that period.