23 November 2017
By Justice Nwafor
The Minister for Information, Alhaji Lai Mohammed, has revealed that Nigeria will attain self-sufficiency in rice production by 2018. The Minister went on to disclose that this prospect has endeared Nigeria to Thailand investors.
To what end…
He stated that investors from Thailand have indicated interest in establishing rice Mills in the country to complement the recently established 120,000 Metric Tonnes WACOT Mill in Kebbi and the 1,000,000MT Dangote Rice Mill.
The information minister revealed this in a press conference in Abuja while briefing journalists on the administration’s growing achievements to revamp the economy.
Gains for Nigeria
According to him Nigeria is getting closer to self-sufficiency in rice production, due to the successes recorded in the local production of rice. As a result, heavy rice import from Thailand has diminished tremendously.
Mr. Mohammed said: “In fact, the Thailand Rice Exporters Association has recently revealed that within a spate of just two years – from September 2015 to September 2017 – Nigeria’s rice importation dropped from 644,131 Metric Tonnes to just about 21,000MT.
“There is more good news to report: As a result of this administration’s success in local production, some investors from Thailand have shown interest in establishing rice milling plants in Nigeria, and this is sure to further boost rice production in Nigeria.
“The increased rice production has, in turn, led to the establishment of rice mills, including the 120,000MT WACOT Mill in Kebbi and the 1,000,000MT Dangote Rice Mill”.
He further stated that Nigeria targets the production of seven million metric tons of rice in 2018.
“So what does the increased production of rice portend for the country? It means, as I said earlier, that Nigeria is very close to achieving self-sufficiency in rice. By 2018, the administration targets rice production of 7 million MT. As at 2015, rice demand in Nigeria stood at 6.3 million MT,” he added.