Imports threaten N2bn packaged sugar investments – Busari

16.06.2017

The National Sugar Development Council (NSDC) has said that Nigeria’s N2 billion packaged sugar investments are being threatened by smuggling of packaged sugar into the country.

Speaking to journalists in Abuja yesterday, the council’s Executive Secretary, Dr. Latif Busari, said importers were flouting the country’s ban on importation of packaged sugar by smuggling them into the country.

He said the implication was that local sugar packaging and cubing businesses were folding up with resultant job losses, while the imported ones took over the market.

In 2013, Nigeria banned the importation of packaged sugar into the country as part of efforts to grow the nation’s sugar industry.

However, four years later, foreign sugar brands still flood Nigerian markets, threatening the local business.

Busari expressed dismay over “the parlous state of the sugar packaging segment of the sugar value chain arising from the continued entry of foreign brands of packaged sugar into our markets.”

He pointed out that the St. Louis brand had defied invitation to invest in Nigeria by opening the packaging company in Nigeria even as the brand was heavily smuggled into the country.

He said Nigeria had the capacity to package sugar for local consumption, sourcing the refined sugar from local refineries.

He urged the enforcement agencies to intensify action on restricting the entry of packaged sugar into the country and also pleaded with Nigerians to reject imported ones and buy locally packaged ones.


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