by Dolapo Adelana
The Minister of Agriculture, Chief Audu Ogbeh on Tuesday said the policy on the ban of importation of rice and wheat has enabled the country to save $5m daily.
Ogbeh said this while speaking in Garun Baba village, Kano during this year’s wheat farm harvest ceremony.
“The tariff increase introduced in December last year saw the import duty on rice increased from 10 to 60 per cent in an effort to increase local production of the product,” he said.
He added that the policy option has created wealth for local farmers and those in the farm produce value chain.
“The rice you grow, the wheat you grow is saving Nigeria a lot of money. Before now we were spending $5m a day importing rice from Thailand. Now that money is in the hands and pocket of farmers in Kano, Jigawa, Kebbi and other parts of the country.
“That is why farmers are getting richer; before now, the money was going to some other places and the poverty was coming here, that era is gone,” he noted.
Ogbeh said the figure represents the money that was previously spent on the importation of these farm produce before the ban on food importation and tariff increase by the government.
Dolapo is a writer and journalist who works with YNaija. He has interests in Christianity, politics and sports.