Bag Of Rice May Sell For N40,000 By December – Minister Warns

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The Minister of State for Agriculture and Rural Development, Senator Heineken Lokpobiri, on Saturday has hinted that there may be possible and sporadic increase in price of rice before the year ends.

The minister further disclosed at the country spends about $22bn a year on importation of food.

Speaking in Bayelsa during a town hall meeting, Lokpobiri said the amount spent on importation has affected the prices of food in the market adding that if Nigerians fail to produce some of the items been imported into the country, there might be a hike in prices of the imported items.

Lokpobiri said: “For your information, we spend about $22bn a year importing food into Nigeria. We know how many more dollars … and that is why you see the price of rice going up.
“Price of rice was N12,000 some months ago, but it is now about N26,000 and if we don’t start producing, by December it could be N40,000.

“Rice matures in three months. So, this is a wake up call for Bayelsa people to take the four farms we have seriously. The federal government has four farms in the state in our records. The average land you see in Bayelsa can grow rice, so the colonial masters were not wrong in their assessment when they said Niger Delta could feed not only Nigeria but the entire West Africa sub-region.

“Unfortunately, agriculture till today, is not a priority of the Niger Delta as far as the state governments are concerned because of oil.”

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