The Nigeria Sugar Master Plan (NSMP), execution can save Nigeria foreign exchange in excess of $700million anually from the backward integration component.
This was disclosed by the Chairman, Dangote Sugar Refinery Plc, Aliko Dangote during a facility tour by some businessmen in Lagos.
iBrandTV gathered that the Backward Integration Programme (BIP) roadmap designed for the nation’s sugar industry, is a major component of the NSMP and has the capacity to tackle soaring unemployment levels and also address other socio-economic issues currently bedevilling the country.
A look into sugar importation shows that in 2019 Nigeria spent $545.536 million on sugar importation, according to data on Trend Economy.
The 2019 figure is much lower than the $1.55 billion that Nigeria spent on importing sugar in 2011. Already, in the first quarter of 2021, the country spent N88.9 billion to import cane sugar from Brazil.
As part of the federal government’s efforts to protect the sugar industry which is governed by the NSMP, in April, 2021 banned the importation of refined sugar and its derivatives from the country’s Free Trade Zones (FTZs).
What Dangote said NSMP
Dangote said that the scheme must be protected to insulate the Nigerian economy to be able to achieve the twin objectives of local manufacturing and job creation.
“If the national sugar master plan is followed strictly and the players all follow the rules, the country will be better for it as Nigeria will save between $600 million and $700 million annually as foreign exchange,” he said.
he also noted that the Group was scaling up its social intervention in communities hosting its companies across the country.
He said efforts were being made to impact positively on the host communities, as his companies had expended billions of naira in states where these investments were located.
Dangote explained that the Corporate Social Responsibility projects undertaken by his companies were in addition to efforts by his Foundation, Aliko Dangote Foundation.
He said the foundation was presently giving out micro-grants to vulnerable women in all the 774 local governments across the country.
General Manager for the BIP, Dangote Sugar, John Beverley, said when the factory becomes fully operational, it would have the capacity to crush 12,000 tons of cane per day.
He said that 90MW power would be generated for both the company’s use and host communities