BUSINESS – The Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) says the volume of rice imported into the country has declined drastically in 2018.
Isaac Okorafor, Director, Corporate Communications at CBN, made this known in a statement. He said Nigeria had imported 5,161 metric tonnes of rice from Thailand and 426 metric tonnes of rice from India as of July — amounting to less than 6,000 metric tonnes in 2018.
The CBN spokesman said this is against the 400,000 metric tonnes being bandied around due to “expected demand by politicians for election campaigns”.
He attributed the reduced imports to “concerted efforts” by the ministry of agriculture and rural development and the interventions of the CBN.
Okorafor said the ministry and the CBN had been collaborating to reduce the volume of rice importation through the “rice revolution”.
“The figures being bandied in certain quarters were based on unrealistic assumptions such as satellite mapping of farms, expected demand by politicians for election campaigns and expected losses from flooding,” the statement quoted Okorafor as saying.
“All of these led to inauthentic conclusions that the country had imported or could import 400,000 more metric tonnes.”