- CBN Licenses Six Companies for Milk Importation
In an effort to bridge supply gap created by the recent milk policy, the Central Bank of Nigeria has licensed six dairy firms to import milk into the country.
The apex bank stated in a circular issued on February 11, 2020 and signed by Dr Ozoemena Nnaji, the Director, Trade and Exchange Department.
CBN said the decision was in line with its objective to increase and improve local milk production, its derivatives and other dairy products in Nigeria.
The six companies were listed as FrieslandCampina WAMCO Nigeria; Chi Limited; TG Arla Dairy Products Limited; Promasidor Nigeria Limited; Nestle Nigeria PLC (MSK only) and Integrated Dairies Limited.
The apex bank, however, said only Form ‘M’ of the approved companies for importation of milks and its derivatives would be honoured.
Nigeria present milk production stood at 500,000 metric tonnes while the nation demand was estimated at 1.7 million tonnes, leaving a supply gap of 1.2 million tonnes.
Isaac Okorafor, the Director, Corporate Communication, CBN, said the aim of the central bank was to increase milk production to about 550,000 in the next 12 months.
Last year, Godwin Emefiele, the Governor, CBN, said: “We believe that milk is one of those products that can be produced in Nigeria. Milk importation has been going on in Nigeria for over 60 years. If you Google West African Milk or Friesland Campina today, they say that they have been importing milk and that they have been in Nigeria for over 60 years.
“Today, the import of milk annually stands at $1.2-$1.5 billion. That is a very high import product into the country. Given that it is a product that we are convinced that it is a product that can be produced in Nigeria.
“The reason some say that our cows are not producing much milk is that our cows roam around; they don’t have water to drink.
“When the policy on the restriction of forex started, we considered including milk on the list. Then we thought that based on the sentiments that people would show, that we should be careful,” he added.