Abuja - In a move he believes would spur local production of the product, Sokoto State Governor, Aminu Waziri Tambuwal, has asked the Federal Government to end the current waiver regime enjoyed by rice importers in the country.
He said the waiver is hampering local production of the commodity and should be phased out, has said.
Tambuwal stated this when he received the new Customs Area Controller for Sokoto, Zamfara and Kebbi States, Alhaji Muhammad Kabir, who paid him a courtesy call in Sokoto city.
The governor argued the quality of rice produced locally was of international standard and far better than many of the ones imported into the country.
The governor said preliminary studies undertaken showed that despite efforts to boost local rice production, unfavourable government policies especially with regards to waiver to importers, coupled with other policies, impeded the states' objectives to achieve local self-sufficiency.
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He said government would continue to support farmers in the rice producing areas to enable them acquire standard facilities that will process their produce.
“Nigeria has what it takes to produce enough rice to meet local needs and export same. We have the potential to meet Africa's rice needs,” Tambuwal said.
He added that the governments of Sokoto, Zamfara, Kebbi and other rice farming states would team up and present a common demand to the Federal Government to ensure development of the product locally and nationally.
The governor meanwhile commended the Customs Service for its role in law enforcement in the federation.
Kabir praised the harmonious working relationship between the Service and states under his command.
- CAJ News