The Group Managing Director of Flour Mills, Boye Olusanya, said at the weekend Nigeria still relies heavily on food importation to meet existing gaps despite several interventions by the Federal Government.
Olusanya, who stated this during his presentation at the Lagos Business School Breakfast Session, said Nigeria’s agricultural trade deficits increased astronomically in 2021.
This, according to him, showed a surge in food importation as domestic demand outweighs supply.
He added that Nigeria’s food trade deficit increased by 61 percent las year, rising from N1.42 trillion recorded in 2020 to N2.29 trillion.
“In 2019 the agricultural sector recorded a trade deficit of N1.3 trillion and N1.02 trillion in 2018,” the Flour Mills chief said.
This again shows that Africa’s most populous country has failed to grow more food for its fast-rising population, who must be fed with staples including rice, beans, tomatoes, and maize, among others.
He added that development forced the country to spend millions of dollars yearly importing food, thereby putting pressure on Nigeria’s foreign exchange reserves and importing thousands of jobs it would have created if the products were grown locally.
The federal government had in the last seven years spent several billions of dollars on various agricultural programmes to spur local food production.
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