Lagos State Government has signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) with WACOT to provide technical support for Imota Rice Mill.
The much anticipated Imota Rice Mill is located in the Ikorodu area of Lagos State. It has a production capacity of 32 metric tons per hour.
In a short ceremony which was witnessed by other government officials and representatives from Wacot Rice Limited, Lagos State Governor, Babajide Sanwolu said he will hand over the rice mill in the next few months, after which it would commence commercial operation.
Investors King learnt that ‘Wacot’ will provide operational support and manage the mill for nine months in the first instance through Joint Venture. Subsequently, the partnership could be subject to renewal.
According to Special Adviser (SA) on Agriculture to the Governor on Rice Initiative, Mr Rotimi Fashola, the need to produce quality and competitive rice for Lagosians necessitated the partnership with Wacot Rice Limited.
Additionally, Imota Rice Mill will be completed by December 2022 as stated by the special adviser.
At full operation, Imota Rice Mill will employ and empower thousands of people both directly and indirectly. Imota Rice Mill is built to produce quality rice and also influence price mechanisms.
“There is a need for the Government to put the rice mill on the path of sustainability. We need to give it to a handler that will project quality.
We sourced to have a partnership in the rice production business that has a stable brand and an eye for efficiency. This brings forth this Joint Venture and technical support agreement with WACOT”.
Meanwhile, Group Managing Director of TGI Group, Rahul Savara, said Lagos Government found a great partner in the firm. WACOT Rice Limited is a subsidiary of TGI Group.
He pledged that the company would be deploying standard technology and services in managing the rice mill.
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Federal Government Revokes 1,633 Mineral Titles Over Non-payment
In a significant move to enforce compliance and revitalize the solid minerals sector, the Federal Government through the Ministry of Solid Minerals Development has taken decisive action by revoking 1,633 mineral titles previously granted to non-compliant mining companies.
The announcement was made by the Minister of Solid Minerals Development, Dele Alake, during a press briefing in Abuja.
The revocation of these mineral titles was a result of the mining companies’ failure to fulfill their mandatory annual service fees of N1,500 per cadastral unit.
Alake emphasized that the move aligns with Sections 10, 11, and 12 of the Mining Act, and it is aimed at creating opportunities for potential investors willing to contribute to the sector.
Expressing disappointment at the non-compliance of mining firms, Alake stated, “It is indeed very unconscionable for corporate bodies making huge profits from mining to refuse to give the government its due by failing to pay their annual service fee.”
The minister stressed that the mining companies, despite reaping significant profits from mining activities, failed to meet their financial obligations to the government.
He further highlighted the nominal nature of the annual service fee, emphasizing that it pales in comparison to the revenue projections of these companies.
The revocation process, initiated by the Mining Cadastral Office on October 4, 2023, targeted a total of 2,213 titles, including Exploration titles, Small Scale Mining Licences, Quarry licenses, and Mining Leases.
The notice of revocation was published in the Federal Government Gazette on October 10, 2023.
Alake cautioned those whose licenses had been revoked to vacate mining sites promptly to avoid potential legal actions by security agencies.
The ministry’s commitment to cleaning up the sector for international competitiveness was underscored, signaling a new era for responsible and compliant mining practices in Nigeria.
Rising Rice Consumption Spurs 37% Price Surge, Reveals AFEX Report
A recent report by AFEX, the agricultural commodity trading firm, has brought to light the surge in rice consumption in Nigeria.
The AFEX Wet Season Crop Production Report for 2023 indicates that the country’s rice consumption has been steadily increasing, contributing to a consistent growth in the rice market.
The report highlights a 37% year-to-date increase in the price of rice in 2023.
According to AFEX, despite Nigeria’s potential to be a net rice exporter, it has spent over $15 billion in the past decade to meet the expanding demand for rice.
Globally, rice prices have reached their highest point in nearly 12 years due to factors such as India’s ban on rice exports and potential production disruptions from El Nino in key regions.
In Nigeria, the 37% price surge is attributed to reduced production in 2022 caused by flooding during the wet season.
The report anticipates a 4% increase in rice production and expects the price of paddy rice to rise by around 32%.
While the Northwest region accounts for 72% of the total rice production in Nigeria, the report underscores the need for strategies to bridge the supply gap and ensure sustainable rice production to meet the growing demand in the country.
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