CEM REPORT | In a move to create jobs and save revenue the Federal Executive Council (FEC) has approved the second phase of the National Sugar Masterplan.
According to the Minister of Industry, Trade and Investment, Otunba Niyi Adebayo, the 10-year plan, will save $350 million annually and create 110,000 jobs.
The Minister speaking with journalists also noted that apart from foreign exchange savings and job creation targets from the second phase of the masterplan, Nigeria also looks forward to saving $65.8 million on ethanol import and generate 400 megawatts of electricity.
He noted that investments in the national sugar policy is aimed at stimulating self-sufficiency in the commodity.
He also said that the first phase of the project had created about 15,000 jobs through key players in the industry.
“The first phase of the sugar master plan was approved, lasting from 2012 to 2022.
“Today, council approved the extension from 2023 to 2033. That’s for another 10 years and the whole idea of the Sugar Masterplan is for the development of the sugar industry, for self-sufficiency in sugar production.
“The plan has several policy measures or fiscal incentives to stimulate demand and attract private sector investment in the sugar industry. Part of the benefits of the sugar master plan is the local production of sugar.
“We have under phase one, four major investors, investing in the industry. These are Dangote Sugar, BUA Sugar, Golden Sugar Company which is flour mill, Care Africa Group which bought the Baccita sugar mill.
“They have jointly created 15,000 jobs, and they have over almost about 200,000 hectares of land that has been acquired for the production of sugarcane to enable them to produce sugar locally. So Council approved phase two of the National Sugar Masterplan.”
On projections for the second phase Adebayo expressed hope that the country should produce about 1.7 to 1.8 million metric tons of sugar a year while producing about 161 million litres of ethanol annually.
“We are hopeful that Nigeria will be able to produce 1.7 to 1.8 million metric tons of sugar a year, thus eliminating the $350 million that we spend on the importation of raw sugar.
“We’re hoping to produce 161 million litres of ethanol annually, which will thus eliminate $65.8 million of ethanol imports annually. We’re hoping to generate 400 megawatts of electricity and we’re hoping to produce 1.6 million tons of animal feed annually.”
On the success of the first phase he said;
“The sugar masterplan has witnessed many successes since 2012 when it was first approved. Nigeria has a sugar refining capacity of three million metric tons of raw sugar a year bow. We have embarked on the Backward Integration Project, which has attracted over $3 billion worth of investments from the four major investors that I mentioned earlier.
“Investments have also been made in Greenfield Sugar Projects, that is smaller projects all across the country. In Jigawa, Kogi, Zamfara, Oyo and Sokoto states. We’ve also established the National Sugar Institute in Ilorin.
“Those are some of the achievements that we have had over the past 10 years and phase two of the Sugar Masterplan that has just been approved, we’re hoping that as a result of this phase two, we will be able to create 110,000 jobs from it.