By Tony Obiechina, Abuja
The Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) has confirmed that its planned policy to restrict allocation of foreign exchange (FOREX) for milk importation and other diary products into the country will soon become effective.
Governor of CBN, Godwin Emefiele who confirmed this while briefing journalists after the Monetary Policy Committee (MPC) in Abuja, said the huge expenditure of between $1.
The governor said he told a meeting of the milk importing companies three weeks ago of the need to reduce the high expenditure on milk importation into the country.
“By doing backward integration, it will help in limiting or reducing the rate of herders and farmers conflict in Nigeria. CBN is determined to make milk production in Nigeria a viable economic proposition.
“The CBN is saying if by the time FOREX is restricted for milk importation, and the importers will need a loan to acquire land, or do artificial insemination of the cows, grow the grass or produce water, the CBN will provide the necessary support
“We are getting to the end of the road for the importation of milk into Nigeria. The era of restriction of foreign exchange for milk importation will come very soon.
“If the milk importers will not change its policy, the CBN will not change its policy. CBN wants milk produced in Nigeria,” Emefiele said.
Speaking further the governor said, “for over sixty years, Nigeria has been importing milk. Today, the import of milk annually stands at between $1,2 to $1,5billion. That is a very high import product in to the country, given that it’s a product that we are convinced that can be produced in the country.
“Let ask ourselves this question: What really does it take to produce milk? Get the cow and give the cow plenty of water to drink and let the cow eat a lot of grass and the cow positioned in a place without roaming about, that cow gets fat and you can take milk out of it.”The reason some say our cows are not producing much milk is because our cows roam about. They don’t have water to drink. Under the pastoral arrangement, you find out that during raining season you find out that, they are somewhere. When the rain recedes, and dry and hot
seasons come, they begin to move from where they are”.
The governor recalled that about three and half years ago, when the policy on restriction of forex
started, it considered including milk in the list of items under
restriction from Forex, but based on expected sentiment from certain quarters, it was put on hold.
He however disclosed that the apex bank met on three occasions with the management of WAMCO, the oldest milk importing firm into Nigeria, on the need to ” integrate backward and begin the process
of development and produce your milk in Nigeria”.
“Unfortunately, after three years, nothing has happened.
Some of them said they started pastoralist arrangement or where they go and collect milk. Three weeks ago, we had another meeting, where we said we need to take stock of what you guys are doing because we can no longer continue to spend close to $1.2 to $1.5 billion importing milk to the country, a product we can produce. To some extent, they should help us also to reduce the rate of header, farmer conflict.
“Perhaps, if you had started this journey three years ago with us,
whereas the headers farmers conflict that we see today would not have been as intense as it is this time. We would need your help at this time because we can no longer wait for you to continue to be importing this product into Nigeria because we are convinced it can be produced in Nigeria”, he added.
DMO Offers N150bn Sukuk Bond for Subscription at N1, 000 Per Unit
The Debt Management Office (DMO) on Tuesday offered for subscription, Ijarah Sukuk valued at N150 billion.
According to a statement by the DMO, the Sukuk is issued by Federal Government of Nigeria (FGN) Roads Sukuk Company PLC, on behalf of the Federal Government.
It said that the Sukuk were offered at N1,000 per unit, subject to a minimum subscription of N10,000 and in multiples of N1,000 thereafter.
“Rental payment is made half-yearly, and bullet repayment is done on the date of maturity.
“Proceeds will be used solely for the construction and rehabilitation of key road projects and bridges across the six geopolitical zones of the country,” the DMO said.
It added that the Ijarah Sukuk was backed by the full faith and credit of the Federal Government.
“It qualifies as securities in which trustees can invest under the Trustee Investment Act.
“Qualifies as government securities within the meaning of Company Income Tax Act and Personal Income Tax Act for tax exemption for pension funds among other investors.
“To be listed on the Nigerian Exchange Limited and FMDQ Securities Exchange Limited, ” it said.
It added that the Ijarah Sukuk was classified as liquid asset by the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) and certified by the Financial Regulation Advisory Council of Experts of the CBN.
The News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) reports that the Sukuk is a Sharia-compliant instrument that represents the interests of the owner in an asset or pool of assets.
It ensures that every financial activity is backed by real economic activity, is usually linked to specific infrastructure projects.(NAN)
Ooni partners Chinese company to create over 50000 jobs
The Ooni of Ife, Oba Adeyeye Ogunwusi, Ojaja II, has signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) with a Chinese company to create employment opportunities for over 50,000 indigenes of the state.
Ooni signed the MoU with China Overseas Energy Development Technology Ltd on Tuesday in Ile-Ife under Community and Private Partnership arrangement.
He said that the company would invest in agriculture, green energy, gold, lithium and other mineral resources in Ile-Ife and the state at large.
According to him, the Chinese company will also focus on the development of agriculture; mechanised farming and the production of cocoa in large quantity.
The traditional ruler stated that the MoU would help the indigenes of the state to enjoy unprecedented investment flow, while assuring that the company would not disappoint in the area of funds.
“The partnership we are signing today with China Overseas Technology Development Company Ltd is going to create over 50,000 employment opportunities to Osun indigenes.
“The company would first invest in agriculture and would set up a cocoa processing plant in Ife-ife, which will serve as its agricultural hub.
“The company will farm on over 20,000 hectares of land, generate green energy using solar which is starting from this palace.
“This palace will be powered by solar 100 per cent within the next 30 to 60 days when it is completed,” Ooni stated.
Continuing, Oba Ogunwusi said the future of Nigeria oil and gas lies in lithium, noting that soonest lithium would be the only means to power battery, electric cars among others.
He added that partnership with the Chinese company would be Community and Private Partnership driven which would help to grow the economy at the community level.
Ooni, who emphasised that the investment would be on a large scale both for Osun and the Federal Government, called for the support of all and sundry.
“In Dubai alone, the Chinese company has investment more than 10 billion U.S. dollars. In South Sudan right now, they are investing over 4 billion dollars. They are now ready to invest double of such investment in Nigeria,” he stated.
Speaking at the occasion, Gov. Ademola Adeleke lauded Ooni for the initiative and the management of the Chinese company for agreeing to invest in the state.
Adeleke restated his commitment to promote culture, tourism and entertainment in the state to improve the wellbeing of residents.
In his remarks, Mr Zhang Xiaolin, the Managing Director/Chief Executive Officer, China Oversea Energy Development Ltd, congratulated Ooni on the celebration of Olojo 2023.
Xiaolin also applauded the traditional ruler for partnering with the company and pledged that the company would adhere to the agreement terms.
KDSG reiterates commitment to enhance capabilities of KADBUSA’s operations
The Director-General (DG), Kaduna Bureau of Substance Abuse Prevention and Treatment (KADBUSA), Joseph Ike, said, Kaduna State Government has reiterated its commitment to enhance the capability of KADBUSA.
The DG stated this on Tuesday at the Capacity-Building Training for operatives of KADBUSA in Kaduna.
He said the training which is in alignment with Gov.Uba Sani’s administration’s agenda, emphasizes Human Capital Development and Citizens’ Engagement.
“It is also important in diligently carrying out the important mandate of the Bureau.
“This collaborative initiative between KADBUSA, the Kaduna State Ministry of Health, and the United Nation Office on Drugs and Crime ( UNODC), underscores the commitment to address the pressing issue of substance abuse within the state.
He said by enhancing the capabilities of KADBUSA’s operations staff, the programme aims to make a tangible difference in the lives of those affected by drug abuse and addiction.
“This two-day, Capacity-Building Training is a significant step towards a healthier, more secured, and prosperous Kaduna State,” he said.
On his part, Project Officer, UNODC, Dr. Akanidomo Ibanga, called for development of policies that will address the prevalence of drugs abuse in the country.
He said people with drug disorder who come in contact with the criminal justice system, should be treated rather than sent to prison.
According to Dr. Ibanga, 14.3 per cent of Nigerians have used drugs within the past years, “that is 14.4 million people. Now, that is three times more than the global average. We have a serious drugs problem on our hands.
“The Nigerian situation is peculiar because it has the drugs problem but doesn’t have enough treatment facilities to handle the issues of people that have drugs disorder.
“This is even a 2018 data. From that time till date, the number of people using drugs have probably increased.
“From projections from WHO and UNODC, there would be 40 per cent increase in drug use by 2030 in Africa, and Nigeria, being the most populous country in Africa, will have most of the number.
“So, we are saying that, we are sitting on s time bomb, because come 2030, we are talking about 20 per cent prevalence, that is, one in every five people you meet on the street.
“There are certain things we can do to avert this. UNODC has evolved certain responses and developed certain models, which can be run by both National and state governments,” Dr. Ibanga added.
Read Our ePaper
TETFund pledges support to reduce unemployment
Share The Executive Secretary, Tertiary Education Trust Fund (TETFund), Sonny Echono, has pledged support for measures that will improve employment...
Chairman tasks new CEOs on leveraging expertise for delivery
Share The Chairman, Uniccon Group, Dr Chuks Ekwueme has tasked newly appointed Chief Executive Officers (CEOs) to leverage their expertise...
Police declare Owodunni Ibrahim, `Primeboy’, wanted in connection with Mohbad’s death
Share Police in Lagos State on Wednesday declared one Owodunni Ibrahim popularly known as “Primeboy’’, wanted in connection with the...
Turkey promises to partner NAF, transfer defence technology
Share The Turkish Ambassador to Nigeria, Mr Hidayet Bayraktar, has expressed the readiness of Turkey to deepen the existing defence...
Bauchi, Gombe, Jigawa move against medical quackery
ShareBauchi, Gombe and Jigawa governments have adopted proactive regulations and monitoring mechanisms to end medical quackery to fasttrack quality healthcare...
Morocco, Five others across Three continents to host 2030 World Cup matches
ShareMorocco, Spain and Portugal have been named hosts of the 2030 FIFA World Cup, while Uruguay, Argentina and Paraguay will...
Reps task health ministry, institutions on mental health
ShareThe House of Representatives has urged the Federal Ministry of Health and other health institutes to ensure the establishment of...
Female engineers teach elderly citizens new tech trends to bridge generational gap
Share The Association of Professional Women Engineers of Nigeria (APWEN), Lagos Chapter, on Wednesday organised a mentorship training for elderly...
Badagry Int’l Film Festival holds Oct. 25, generates Three Thousand film entries – Organizers
ShareThe organizers of the Badagry International Film, Cultural and Sports Festival (BIFIF) on Wednesday said the maiden edition of the...
Police seek closer working relationship with NAF in Enugu
Share The Police Command in Enugu State on Wednesday sought the strengthening of the existing mutually beneficial working relationship between...