FG to ban packaged sugar importation in January

Minister of Trade and Investment, Mr. Olusegun Aganga
The Federal Government has announced that packaged sugar (finished cube and granulated) importation into the country will officially become prohibited in January 2013, under a new sugar policy intended to replicate the successes achieved with the Backward Integration Policy in the cement industry.
Also, the importation of raw sugar, which is the basic raw material for refined sugar, will soon stop being an all-comers’ affair under a reviewed importation policy to be introduced in the sector soon.
According to the new policy, a full era of backward integration will soon begin, which will tie importation of brown raw sugar by producers and manufacturers in the country to the quantum of their local productive capacity in sugarcane cultivation and development, either as fresh growers or outgrowers.

The Minister of Trade and Investment, Mr. Olusegun Aganga, according to a statement,  stated these on Monday in Abuja, adding that on the average, Nigeria had been losing N568bn yearly to the importation of brown sugar.
He said 98 per cent of brown sugar used in the country was being imported, adding that the new shift of focus from importation to local production was aimed at creating employment.
Aganga also announced that the government, through his ministry, had put in place strategies to restructure areas of critical needs and losses.
To this end, he said Nigeria would be generating N474bn ($3bn) from a focused correction of imbalances in weights and measurement, especially in the oil and gas and telecoms sectors of the economy in the year 2013.
For instance, in the area of product measurement, he said, “We want to reposition and strengthen the Weight and Measure Department to stop the $3bn yearly loss in foreign exchange to inappropriate measurements in all facets of the economy.”
The minister also said the country attracted $8.9bn worth of foreign direct investments as of the end of 2011.
He said, “In all, investments worth of $8.9bn were attracted into Nigeria in 2011, showing that FDI inflow into Nigeria surpassed the global and regional average by, at least, 20 per cent during the year.
“For you to attract investment into the country, you must have the right structure in place, and that is why we now have Trade and Investment desks in our embassies, and the Ministry of Foreign Affairs is fully involved.”

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