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Merchandise Trade Dropped by N641bn in Q2 — NBS



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  • Merchandise Trade Dropped by N641bn in Q2 — NBS

The National Bureau of Statistics on Thursday released the country’s merchandise trade report for the second quarter of the year, with trade dropping by N641bn from N7.21tn in the first quarter to N6.56tn.

The bureau, in the report which was uploaded on its website, said the country’s second quarter merchandise trade experienced a decline of 8.89 per cent quarter-on-quarter

The report attributed the decline recorded in the second quarter trade to contraction in both imports and exports.

The report read in part, “The total value of Nigeria’s merchandise trade was N6.59tn in the second quarter of 2018, which was a 8.89 per cent contraction from the figure recorded in Q1 2018 at N7.21tn and a 14.56 per cent growth from Q2 2017’s N5.73tn.

“The contraction of total trade in the reviewing quarter was mainly driven by the decline in both imports and exports.”

During the period, the NBS put the country’s trade balance at a surplus of N2.35tn.

This, it noted, was an increase of 8.36 per cent from the N2.17tn recorded in the first quarter of this year.

The report put the total import value for the country at N2.1tn in the second quarter, noting that this was 16.3 per cent lower than the N2.51tn recorded in the first quarter.

Some of the imported items during the period were agricultural produce, N224.52bn; raw materials import, N184.49bn; solid minerals, N17.29bn; energy goods, N98.17bn; and manufactured goods, N1.17tn, among others.

For exports, the NBS said goods worth N4.46tn were exported to other countries.

This, it noted, indicated a contraction of 4.9 per cent over the N4.69tn recorded in the first quarter.

“So, it is a great thing for this country that we are now facing commercial agriculture; this is agriculture with commerce behind it, and it is going to make us rich and self-sufficient, and that is the beauty of it.

The Chairman, WHGF Limited, Capt. Hosa Okunbor (retd), explained that the project, sited on 27 hectares of land with the capacity for 28 hydroponic greenhouses, was designed to produce an estimated 4,200 tonnes per year of agricultural produce as well as earn an estimated revenue of $5m yearly.

Okunbor said that the greenhouse would also contribute towards increasing Nigeria’s food security and self-sufficiency, especially as the country was said to be spending about $360m annually on the importation of tomatoes.

According to him, the farms will directly employ 500 people at full capacity, while thousands of youths and women will be engaged indirectly in the production of many types of vegetables for local consumption as well as export.

He stated that by adopting new technologies, Nigeria could replicate the agricultural success recorded by western countries like Mexico, which generated $32.6m from agricultural exports in 2017.

CEO/Founder Investors King Ltd, a foreign exchange research analyst, contributing author on New York-based Talk Markets and, with over a decade experience in the global financial markets.


Stop Maize, Soybean Export to Reduce Scarcity – NIAL



Farm input

Stop Maize, Soybean Export to Reduce Scarcity – NIAL

The Nigerian Institute of Animal Science on Tuesday called on the Federal Government to halt the continued export of maize and soybean to reduce the scarcity of the commodities as well curb their price hike in Nigeria.

Registrar and Chief Executive Officer, NIAL, Prof. Eustance Iyayi, told journalists in Abuja that the poultry sector was currently hit by the severe scarcity of maize and soybean.

This, he said, was due to the continued export of the commodities, the COVID-19 pandemic, which had disorganised the international supply chain, lingering insecurity in the North-East, farmers/herders conflict and flooding in some parts of the country.

“Maize and soybean are being exported and this has exacerbated the situation leading to local scarcity and price escalation of the commodities in poultry production,” Iyayi stated.

He added, “The increasing prices of the essential commodities has resulted in the increase in price of finished feeds by about 75 per cent.

“This has led to the closure of small and medium sized poultry farms thereby threatening about 10 million jobs as a result of this scarcity.

“To set the poultry industry from total collapse, the institute urges the government to immediately halt the exportation of soybean and maize and grant import permit to importers at the official foreign exchange rate.”

Iyayi said there was shortage of soybean in Nigeria and other countries, stressing that the little amount being produced across the country should not be exported.

He said the current maize yield of about one to two tonnes per hectare being produced in Nigeria would not be enough to sustain the country.

The NIAL helmsman stated that the country should be producing between seven and 10 tonnes per hectare in order to meet the requirements for humans and animals.

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Petrol Landing Cost Jumps to N186, Oil Hits $64




Petrol Landing Cost Jumps to N186, Oil Hits $64

Against the backdrop of the rising price of oil prices, the landing cost of Premium Motor Spirit (petrol) imported into Nigeria has increased to N186.33 per litre.

Investors King had exclusively reported on February 9 that the landing cost of PMS rose to about N180 per litre on February 5 from N158.53 per litre on January 7.

Crude oil price accounts for a large chunk of the final cost of petrol, and the deregulation of petrol price by the Federal Government last year means that the pump price of the product will reflect changes in the international oil market.

Going by the petrol pricing template of the Petroleum Products Pricing Regulatory Agency, the landing cost of petrol rose to N186.33 per litre on February 16, with the pump price of the product expected to be N209.33 per litre.

The international oil benchmark, Brent crude, closed at $63.96 per barrel on February 16, up from $59.34 per barrel on February 5.

The rising price of crude oil pushed the cost of petrol quoted on Platts to $560.75 per metric tonne (N163.08 per litre, using N390/$1) on February 16 from $543.25 per metric tonne (N157.99 per litre) on February 5.

Other cost elements that make up the landing cost include freight (N10.29), lightering expenses (N4.57), insurance cost (N0.25), Nigerian Ports Authority charge (N2.38), Nigerian Maritime Administration and Safety Agency charge (N0.23), jetty throughput charge (N1.61), storage charge (N2.58), and financing (N1.33).

The freight cost increased to $35.41 per MT (N10.29 per litre) last Wednesday from $30.04 per MT (N8.74 per litre) on February 5.

The pump price is the sum of the landing cost, wholesale margin and the distribution margins. The wholesale margin is N4.03 while the distribution margins comprise transporters allowance (N3.89), retailer (N6.19), bridging fund (N7.51), marine transport average (N0.15), and admin charge (N1.23).

Apart from the changes in global crude oil prices, the exchange rate of naira to the dollar also affects the cost of imported petrol.

The cost of petrol would be higher if the 410/$1 rate at which the naira closed on Monday at the Investors’ and Exporters’ Foreign Exchange Window was used. The naira closed at 480/$1 at the parallel market.

The Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation, which has been the sole importer of petrol into the country in recent years, is still being relied upon by marketers for the supply of the product despite the deregulation of the downstream petroleum sector.

Oil marketers said recently that they were ready to resume importation of petrol if the foreign exchange was made available to them at a competitive rate.

“The discussion we should be having today is how best to maximise the benefits of the removal of price controls and subsidies while minimising the adverse effects of this action on our citizens,” the Chairman, Major Oil Marketers Association of Nigeria, Mr Adetunji Oyebanji, said at a virtual press briefing.

Brent crude, against which Nigeria’s oil is priced, rose by $1.67 to $64.58 per barrel as of 6:08pm Nigerian time on Monday.

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FG to Lift 100 Million People Out of Poverty With Gas Expansion Project



Gas Plant

FG to Lift 100 Million People Out of Poverty With Gas Expansion Project

The Federal Government has said about 100 million Nigerians will be lifted out of poverty through the National Gas Expansion Programme (NGEP).

The Minister of State for Petroleum Resources, Chief Timipre Sylva, disclosed this on Monday during the inauguration of the NGEP in Ado Ekiti, Southwest.

Sylva said the project was “a practical demonstration of President Muhammadu Buhari’s commitment to lift 100 million Nigerians out of poverty by using gas value chain as catalyst for social and economic development in Nigeria”.

The minister said, “The programme has its main objective to reinforce and expand gas supply as well as stimulate demand in Nigeria through effective and efficient mobilisation and utilisation of all available assets, resources and infrastructure in the country.

“The programme is geared towards the implementation of Mr President June 12, 2019 promise to take hundred million Nigerians out of poverty within the current decade by ensuring that locally produced, available, accessible and affordable fuel is sufficiently supplied across the country”.

Sylva added that Nigeria was richly endowed with mineral resources, specifically, hydrocarbons, crude oil and natural gas with proven gas reserves of over 200 trillion cubic feet of natural gas, which he said had presented the country with opportunity to use gas as a catalyst for social economy renaissance.

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