Key stakeholders in Nigeria’s sugar industry are set to ramp up investment to the tune of $2.6 billion following a significant increase in demand.
Sugar demand reached 2 million metric tonnes as at the end of 2013, representing 500,000 metric tonnes more than the 1.5 million metric tonnes requested in 2012, according to information by the National Sugar Development Council (NSDC).
This has drawn significant interest from the industry’s major players who are keen to exploit the growth in demand.
One of Nigeria’s leading providers, Dangote Sugar, is investing $2 billion following the acquisition of Savannah Sugar in Adamawa State, Northern Nigeria. It also aims to fund an expansion project that will raise output to 1.5 million metric tonnes by 2018. This will be achieved by increasing the capacity of its sugar plantation from 6,500 hectares to 21,000 which will boost production to a 100,000 tonnes of sugar annually.
Another player, HoneyGold Group plans to invest $300 million in two sites in Adamawa with production capacity of 200,000 tonnes annually. Other investors like Confluence Sugar Company and Crystal Sugar Mills are planning to investments of up to $240 million and $30 million respectively.
These investments will reduce the country’s dependence on sugar importation which reportedly runs into millions of dollars. It will also encourage participation of local sugarcane farmers who have previously complained of low patronage thus stimulating Nigeria’s economic growth. (VENTURES AFRICA)