Nigerian Firms in Trouble as Central Bank Measures Backfire

Nigerian companies making anything from soap to tomato paste could run out of raw materials and be forced to shut down as Africa's top oil producer has effectively banned the import of almost 700 goods to prevent a currency collapse.

Selected luxury items such as make-up or brown bread imported from Europe have become scarce in some shops as the central bank denies importers dollars, seeking to stem the fallout from a crash in vital oil revenues hammering Africa's largest economy.

‘Agriculture Stakeholders Eagerly Await an Agric Minister’

The Chairman, Lagos Chamber of Commerce and Industry, Agro and Non Oil Sector, Wale Oyekoya, has said that agriculture stakeholders were eagerly awaiting the appointment of an agriculture minister to know the next policy direction for the sector.

Mr. Oyekoya also advised the Federal Government to stop inconsistent policies on agriculture.

He gave the advice in an interview with the News Agency of Nigeria yesterday in Lagos.

Kellogg to Buy 50% Stake in Nigeria-based Multi Pro for $450m

To expand in Africa, Kellogg Co said it would buy a 50 percent stake in Lagos, Nigeria-based Multi Pro, a sales and distribution unit owned by Singapore's Tolaram Group, for $450 million.

Reuters reports that Kellogg would also have the option to buy a stake in Tolaram Africa Foods.

Multi Pro was incorporated in Nigeria in 1997 with a broad mandate that includes but not limited to manufacturing, trading, distribution and importation. The company’s core business is selling and distribution of Indomie Instant Noodles.

F.G to Encourage Concessionary Funding for SMEs

FUND –SMEs are grossly undeserved in terms of low cost financing.

In a bid to help Micro, Small and Medium Scale Enterprises (SMEs) overcome the problem of access to low cost financing, the Federal Government will encourage making "well planned concessionary funding initiatives" available to them, according to President Muhammadu Buhari.

Nigeria Spends N1trillion on Food Imports Per Annum

The Permanent Secretary, Federal Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Development, Mr. Sonny Echono, reported that Nigeria’s food import was mounting at an unsustainable rate of 11%, while the country had continued to rely on pricey foods from the global market.
According to the Federal Government, the country spends N1trillion annually to import wheat, rice, fish and sugar, translating to over N10trillion from 2005 till now.

US Urges FG to Revitalize Cocoa Industry

The United States Government has urged the Federal Government to prioritise the development of the cocoa industry.
The US Diplomatic Mission to Nigeria said it was unfortunate that the country, which thrived on broad cocoa production and export, had failed to key into the rising universal demand for the agricultural commodity.
The US Consul General, Mr. Jefferey Hawkins, disclosed that even though there was an ‘insatiable’ worldwide craving for chocolate, a by-product of Cocoa, Nigeria was not positioning itself to take advantage of the opportunity.

16 States to Benefit From Bank of Industry

The Bank of Industry, BOI and the Federal Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Development signed a Memorandum of Understanding, MoU, for N13.6bn loan exclusively targeted at the private sector at a maximum of 10 years with a 3-year cessation at 5 per cent interest flat rate annually to 16 benefiting states.
The sixteen states are said to be benefiting from the N13.6billion deal entered into as an intervention funds for cassava and rice milling in the country.

FG - Rice production Attracts $1.6bn Investments

The Federal Government disclosed that rice production has attracted $1.6bn (N256bn) worth of investments in the last three years.
Dr. Akinwumi Adesina, Minister of Agriculture and Rural Development reported during the signing of a Memorandum of Understanding with the Bank of Industry to build rice and cassava mills across the country.
According to him, they have been able to attract $1.6bn of investment into rice production within three years. The largest one being Aliko Dangote that has put up in $1bn into commercial rice production and also commercial rice milling.

Black pod disease impends 305,000MT cocoa production target

The targeted production of 305,000 metric tonnes of cocoa by the end of the 2013/2014 season may not be achieved due to the outbreak of the black pod disease.

According to the Cocoa Association of Nigeria, the actual production output will be less than 300,000 metric tonnes. The association stated that the disease had affected production in some key producing areas in the country.

Experts in Agriculture Meet to Tackle Food Shortages

International experts in agriculture and food security gathered at the Research in Ethiopia to Feed Africa High-Level Policy Dialogue to track progress and encourage actions to address crucial food shortages in Africa. The policy Dialogue which is part of the African Green Revolution Forum (AGRF) 2014 was co-sponsored by the Canada’s International Development Research Centre (IDRC).