It’s A Shame Nigeria Still Imports, Eggs, Toothpick, Sugar, Others – CBN Gov

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The Governor of the Central Bank of Nigeria, Godwin Emefiele, says it
is a shameful thing in Nigeria to still be importing some basic items such
as wheat, eggs, toothpicks and others into the country when such items
should be produced in Nigeria. Speaking at a news conference yesterday
June 24th, Mr Emefiiele said to discourage the importation of such
items, the CBN, banks and bureaux de change offices will henceforth
seize to offer foreign exchange to business men & women who import
such goods.

According to Mr Emefiele, the move by the CBN is to encourage the
production of such items in Nigeria.
“Most of you are aware of the often-quoted number of N1.3 trillion,
which is what we spend on average importing rice, fish, sugar, and
wheat every year. I am saying it is shameful that we have to import
toothpick. I am saying that it is shameful for us to import fish in sauce
canned, fish in sauce and sardine. I am saying it is shameful. Before I
was born palm kernel was taken out of Nigeria and taken to another
country and today we go to that country and import palm oil. It is
shameful. It is shameful that items that we used to produce in this
country we now begin to import them.
It is shameful and we need to stop them. That is what we are saying.

Only last week, I met the Governor of Kebbi State and he lamented the
unfortunate situation in that state. Where people, our own farmers, have
committed themselves to producing rice and have produced paddy and
we have paddy glut in Kebbi State today. As I speak, the government
has spent its money buying paddy from the rice farmers, almost close
to 200,000 of paddy rice. Aside from that, Kebbi State farmers have
unpurchased paddy rice close to 800,000 tons. And yet we patronise
imported rice.

For our benefits, those rice imported to the country are those that have
spent at least seven years in their stores and yet we have rice that is
produced today in Nigeria and we are running away from them. The
only way we can encourage people who are producing rice to go back to
the farms is to do what we have done today. How can we keep
complaining about the depreciation of the naira when all we do as a
people is to import everything from ordinary Geisha and toothpicks to
even eggs? These are some of the fundamental reasons behind the
bank’s recent announcement.”he said

He warned that any bank or bureau de change outlet that offers foreign
exchange to any business owner who imports such goods will be
sanctioned

“Foreign exchange will not be provided by the Central Bank of Nigeria,
the banks or by bureaux de change. If we find people flouting it, luckily
these people we have mentioned are under our regulation, we know how
to deal with them”he said

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