The News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) and the Bulgarian News Agency (BTA) on Tuesday signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) that would see the two agencies engage in direct exchange of news content and information.
Speaking during the signing of the agreement at NAN headquarters in Abuja, the Director-General of BTA, Mr Kiril Valchev said that the “contract” represented the first agreement Bulgaria and Nigeria had signed in the past 25 years.
Valchev described the agreement-signing ceremony as a historical moment as it marked the beginning of a mutually beneficial programme that would enable both news agencies to “help each other” and “have full access” to news content.
According to the BTA director-general, the Bulgarian news agency publishes more than 1,000 news reports and no fewer than 3,000 photos every day.
He said the Bulgarian news agency would, following the signing of the MoU, begin to publish NAN news stories about Nigeria in its daily bulletin, seven days a week.
He said BTA would offer training opportunities to NAN reporters as part of the MoU signed between the two news agencies.
Valchev said the Bulgarian news agency would send reporters to cover the 2023 general elections in Nigeria.
He urged the management of NAN to consider opening a permanent office in Sofia, adding that BAT will support NAN towards that end.
He urged the NAN management to endeavour to take steps towards opening its office in Sofia in the early part of 2023.
Responding, the Managing Director of NAN, Mr Buki Ponle, welcomed the idea put forward by his Bulgarian counterpart.
Ponle said NAN had accepted the offer and would work towards it through the Federal Ministry of Information.
He said in February, the management of NAN were in Addis Ababa in furtherance of plans towards the reopening of the agency’s office in the Ethiopian capital and global penetration.
The NAN MD said the signing of the MoU “marked a significant milestone between the two agencies” and that it was the beginning of a “sustainable and mutually beneficial engagement”.
According to him, the world was becoming a small global village with NAN having a major role to play in the community.
Ponle said NAN’s role as a major player in the global community was the reason for its trustworthiness, credibility, truthfulness, relevance, and currency in news content dissemination attributes that have made it reliable.
He added that NAN is the largest content provider in Nigeria and has maintained its position in the 36 states of the country.
Valchev signed the MoU on behalf of the Bulgarian news agency while Ponle signed the document on behalf of NAN.