Last Updated on November 23, 2021 by Ope Quadri
With a landmass of 923,768 km², Nigeria shares land boundaries with four African countries in the South and in the Northern region. All the land borders are African in Cameroon, the Republic of Benin, the Chad Republic, and the Republic of Niger.
The largest African country in terms of population also shares maritime borders with three African countries as Ghana, São Tomé, and Príncipe, and Equatorial Guinea.
Which African country shares the largest land area with Nigeria?
Of all the 11 African countries that share land boundaries with Nigeria, the Niger Republic and the Republic of Benin share the biggest landmass with Nigeria.
Niger Republic borders can be found in seven states in Nigeria, they are:
- Yobe, and
- Zamfara states
While the Benin Republic also shares part of its territory with seven states in Nigeria:
- Niger state
Nigerian States That Share Boundaries With Other Countries and the economic importance
|States in Nigeria||Foreign Borders||Economic Significance|
|Adamawa||Cameroon||It promotes cross-border businesses between Adamawa petty traders and Cameroonian buyers and vice versa|
Republic of Niger
|If the government could restore peace, farmers in Borno would have been the most beneficiaries considering the fact that it shares the highest land borders with foreign countries. The neighbouring countries would have also benefited|
|Cross River||Cameroon||There has always been cross-border trade between Cross River and Cameroon. Though most of the traders are done through smuggling.|
|Jigawa||Niger Republic||Jigawa traders and their counterparts in Niger Republic are partners in cross border business|
|Katsina||Niger Republic||It fosters foreign trade with traders in Niger|
|Kebbi rice farmers have a good number of shops in Niger and Benin Republics where their goods are sold.|
|Kwara||Republic of Benin||One of its LGAs, Baruten, shares a long border with the Republic of Benin. Chikanda is the border town.|
|Lagos||Republic of Benin||It fosters cross-border trade between merchants in Lagos with buyers in Benin Republic and vice versa|
|Niger state||Republic of Benin||To the west|
|Ogun||Republic of Benin||It has been fostering a century-long trade between Ogun and Benin Republic.|
|Oyo||Republic of Benin|
|Sokoto||Niger Republic and Benin republic||Cross-border trade is fostered|
|Yobe||Niger Republic||As above|
|Zamfafra||Niger Republic||As above|
Occupying 36,917 square kilometres is Adamawa state. Its boundaries Cameroon is a well-established one after the International Court ruling a few decades ago when some parts were ceded to Nigeria and they went with the present-day Adamawa.
It’s on record that Nigeria’s former Vice President and a former Presidential candidate Alhaji Atiku Abubakar was parts of the villages that were ceded to Nigeria.
The state is also blessed with several mountains and large river valleys.
Borno used to be the largest state in Nigeria in terms of land area before successive military governments divided it for easy administration.
Today, the state is the second largest in terms of land area after Niger state. It houses the now notorious Sambisa forest, a location unofficially known as the operation terrorist base.
Having said that, Borno borders the Republic of Niger to the north, the Republic of Chad to the northeast, and Cameroon to the east which should be business opportunities for the Borno people, but terrorism would not let them enjoy the benefits.
Through Ikom, there is a village that links Nigeria with Cameroon either through by trekking or through motorbike.
Today, Nigeria’s government seems to have realised the importance of cross-border trade between Nigerian buyers and sellers and their counterparts in the Republic of Cameroon, when they officially commission a long road linking the two countries.
The construction of the 1.5km began on April 28, 2017, and was completed in March 2021 which linked the Mfum/Bermenda roads link Nigeria in Etung LGA of Cross River State to Bermenda in Southern Cameroon, which gulped $35.9
“We have had a strong relationship with the Republic of Cameroon in terms of trade and business,” Minister of Works and Housing, Mr Raji Fashola said in July 2021
Carved out of the present-day Kano in 1991, Jigawa is one of the states in Nigeria that shares a border with the Republic of the Niger.
With 24,971 square kilometres of land area, part of Katsina land spread across the border with the Republic of Niger. The state was carved out of the defunct Kaduna State on September 23, 1987.
Kebbi State has a landmass of 37,699 square kilometers which it shares with the Niger Republic and the Benin Republic. The state was ranked number two in terms of electricity in the Ease of Doing Business in Nigeria by PEBEC (Presidential Enabling Business Environment Council).
It does only shares boundaries with these two countries, they now have inter-cultural and ethnic linkages.
Nigeria’s commercial city, Lagos, is the investment destination and also shares borders with the Republic of Benin to the west, through cross-border trade has been enhanced.
Called the gateway state because of its high concentration of industries, Ogun State is one of the states in the Southwest geopolitical zone of Nigeria.
Traders in Lagos, Osun, Ekiti, and other southwest states have used the land border between Ogun and the Republic of Benin to buy and sell goods and services.
Home of the caliphate, Sokoto shares land borders with the Niger Republic. Not just that, Niger and Sokoto also share religious values and have similarities in cultural values.
Its borders with the Republic of Niger to the north, Yobe, one of the Northeastern states were created by the regime of Gen. Ibrahim Babangida on August 27, 1991
It was created out of the old Borno.
Zamfara State which has large deposits of gold shares land border with the Niger Republic to the north, which traders on bike use to inter-connect in international trade.
While it is believed that the land borders these Nigerian states share with other African countries have been enhancing trade relations, this doesn’t come without some hiccups.
Some of them include infiltration of armed foreign herders into Nigeria through the land border and the smuggling of goods which has affected the local production in Nigeria.
If the government put in place good economic policies in place, the land borders Nigeria shares with the neighbouring countries can be a blessing in terms of international trade
In all, 15 states share boundaries with other countries in Nigeria.
Ope is the co-founder of InfomediaNG. He’s a researcher whose interests cut across real estate investment, stocks, financial technology, and youth empowerment. He’s awesome in Content Marketing and SEO. Favourite Tools: Google Analytics, Canva, RankMath, UberSuggest