NIGERIA – Tiamin Rice Mill Limited has invested a total of US$13.37M to boost its production capacity from the current 320 tonnes to 1,520 tonnes per day in line with the Federal Government’s rice sufficiency policy.

The company was established in 2016 in Kano state and started production of rice in 2018 with 320 tonnes per day.

The Managing Director of the company, Aminu Ahmed, disclosed that the existing production line would be expanded to 920 tonnes next year as a new established production line would start production of 600 tonnes per day in Bauchi state by May 2020.

“Already we have placed orders for all the machinery needed, and all arrangements are on top gear to meet the deadline we set,” Ahmed added

“In line with Kano State Government’s policy of allocating free land to genuine investors towards reviving the industrial glory of the state, Kano State governor has particularly allocated land to us for our expansion project.”

Ahmed explained that the policy of the current administration, especially the ban on smuggling and the intervention by the Central Bank of Nigeria had helped immensely in boosting local production of rice.

President of Nigeria, Muhammadu Buhari in August, ordered the closure of the land border with Benin Republic and other neighbouring countries due to massive smuggling activities especially of rice that threatened the attainment of self-sufficiency in production of agricultural commodities.

Defending the decision, the President said, “After many years of diplomacy and aggressive regulatory oversight which yielded few results, we decided to close our land borders for a limited time to assess the impact of this measure

‘’Within a few short weeks, we are already seeing a decline in the volumes of counterfeit smuggled goods in some of our major markets across the country.’’

This is collaborated by Comptroller-General of the Nigeria Customs Service, Hameed Ali who appeared before the Senate and House of Representatives joint committees on Finance and National Planning, working on the 2020 – 2022 Medium Term Expenditure Framework and Fiscal Strategy Paper stating,

“There was a day in September that we collected N9.2bn (US$25m) in one day. It had never happened before. This was after the closure of the border and since then, we have maintained an average of about N4.7bn (US$12m) to N5.8bn (US$15m) on a daily basis which is far more than we used to collect.”

Mr. Wale Adegbite, a former Chairman, Manufacturers Association of Nigeria (MAN), Ogun Chapter, said that the closure of Nigeria’s land border had enhanced sales of locally produced goods in the market.

He further stated that local companies now have a level playing field to compete with foreign goods imported into the country.

The Federal government is adamant to stick to the border closure until January 31, 2020.