Connecting Women Entrepreneurs Across Africa

At the Murtala Muhammed Foundation (MMF), we believe in the power of collaboration to drive positive change. One of our key initiatives, the Women’s Integration and Development in Enterprise Across Africa (WIDEAA) program, is making a significant impact by connecting women entrepreneurs in Nigeria with opportunities across the African continent.

African Trade and Integration: A Snapshot

The United Nations Economic Commission for Africa highlighted a critical issue in its report, revealing that Africa’s trade within the continent accounted for just 14 percent of its total trade. This means that a staggering 86 percent of Africa’s trade was with the rest of the world, indicating low intra-African trade.

In 2015, only 5 percent of Africa’s imported cereals came from within the continent. These figures underscored the need for regional integration and cooperation.

The Path to Integration

In response to this challenge, a collaboration between the African Union Commission, the Economic Commission for Africa, and the African Development Bank set out to measure regional integration using the Africa Regional Integration Index. This index assessed various aspects of integration, including trade, investment facilitation, infrastructure, free movement of persons, and integration into regional value chains.

WIDEAA: Bridging the Gap

The objectives of WIDEAA align perfectly with the goals of the Africa Regional Integration Index. As part of our program, women entrepreneurs from Nigeria embarked on business integration trips to countries like the Republic of Namibia.


Namibia’s economy is driven by key sectors such as mining (diamonds, uranium, iron ore), agriculture, manufacturing, and tourism. Many of the goods, including cereals, are imported into the country. The visit provided a unique opportunity for Nigerian entrepreneurs to explore potential trade integration and collaboration in these sectors.

Strengthening Ties

During these visits, our team interacted with counterparts in Namibia, fostering exchange visits in return. This reciprocal exchange allowed Namibian women entrepreneurs to explore business opportunities in Nigeria, gaining first hand insights into our vibrant economy and its regulations.


We extend our sincere appreciation to the Namibian Ambassador to Nigeria and Nigeria’s former Ambassador to Namibia for hosting these exchange visits

Towards Economic Growth

Regional integration in Africa is key to stimulating economic growth, reducing poverty, and combating unemployment across member states. By promoting integration, especially in trade, we aim to open up more opportunities for people and improve intra-African trade.


MMF’s efforts align with the goals of the United Nations, the African Union, and regional bilateral organizations to promote integration on the continent.

Building Bridges since 2013

Since 2013, MMF has been partnering with the Namibian Ministry of Gender Equality and Child Welfare to facilitate business visits. These visits have seen Nigerian women entrepreneurs exploring investment opportunities in Namibia, while Namibian investors have reciprocated by visiting Nigeria.

Get Involved

Interested in learning more about our Women’s Exchange Program? Explore how we are connecting women entrepreneurs and fostering economic growth.

Donate Now

Join us in our mission to promote regional integration and empower women entrepreneurs. Your donation can make a significant difference in the lives of many.

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