Poultry farms across the country are currently shutting down operations due to the persistent hike in the price of maize, a major feed for birds in the subsector, the Poultry Association of Nigeria (PAN) has said.
Based on this, PAN stated that the poultry subsector in Nigeria was heading for a crash if the government failed to salvage the industry.
In a statement, the association said, “At the moment, the poultry industry in Nigeria is on the verge of total collapse if urgent intervention is not channelled to it without further delay.
“We are aware that the government has declared a state of emergency on the food security situation of the country, but the situation of the poultry industry calls for an urgent intervention to save the industry from total collapse”, the statement said.
Jointly signed by PAN’s National President, Sunday Ezeobiora, and Director-General, Onallo Akpa, the statement said there had been an upward surge in the cost of maize, forcing farmers to shut down their operations.
It said, “The high surge in the price of maize and the near absence or scarcity of the product is causing farmers to close down their poultry farms at the moment because it is no longer sustainable to feed the birds and be in business.
“This is threatening the further development of the Nigerian poultry industry”.
Findings also revealed that the price of eggs, a daily protein source for many Nigerians, had soared by over 118.34 per cent after maize importation fell by 97.91 per cent.
According to data obtained from the National Bureau of Statistics, the price of one agric egg medium size rose to N89.17 as at May 2023 from N40.84 as at May 2020.
Meanwhile, the importation of maize, a major component of poultry feeds, fell to $1.82m as at the end of 2022 from $87.08m as at the end of 2020, according to data from the International Trade Center.
According to farmers who spoke with The Tide’s source, maize is a major component (60 per cent to 70 per cent) of poultry feed, and the increase in the cause of maize because of an import ban had translated to a rise in the price of eggs for the average Nigerian.
In 2020, the Federal Government banned the importation of maize into the country as the CBN added maize to the list of items restricted from accessing foreign exchange.
While Nigeria had banned the importation of maize, its local production has also suffered due to sustained banditry in the north.
A circular signed by the Director, Trade and Exchange Department, CBN, OS Nnaji, in 2020 stated, “As part of efforts by the Central Bank of Nigeria to increase local production, stimulate a rapid economic recovery, safeguard rural livelihoods and increase jobs which were lost as a result of the ongoing COVlD-19 pandemic, authorised dealers are hereby directed to discontinue the processing of Forms M for the importation of maize/corn with immediate effect”.
The FG later gave concessions to four companies (Premier Feeds, Mills Wacot, Chi Farms, and Crown Flour) to import 262,000 tonnes of maize because of the importance of maize to the poultry industry. Nigeria has 400,000 metric tonnes of maize production shortfall.
According to a farmer, Dr Azeez Gbadamosi, the continued increase in the price of eggs was directly related to the increase in feeds. He told The PUNCH, “The increase in the price of eggs is due to the cost of feeds. Almost every week, the cost of feeds rises.
“Also, there is the cost of medication, transportation, and others too. The cost of feeds is majorly increasing because of the cost of maize; you know maize makes up more than 50 per cent of the feed. The cost of maize is on the rise because local production has really been hindered”.
Another farmer, who is also a veterinary doctor, Akintade Akintayo, said the price of feeds was the major reason why egg prices were rising. He lamented that in the last two weeks, the price of New Hope feeds, a poultry feed, had increased thrice.
The farmer, who operates Atade Farms, said, “Maize is like 60 per cent to 70 per cent of the whole feeds. The increase in the price of maize is one of the major factors. Maize is expensive because a few years ago, the importation of maize was limited. And the bulk of the maize we use for many of our general activities, including human consumption, is imported”.
Currency Outside Banks Rises 4% To N2.29trn …As Credit To Govt Hits N32.5trn
Currency Outside Banks (CoB) rose Month-on-Month (MoM) by N90 billion or 4.09 percent to N2.29 trillion in August from N2.2 trillion in July 2023.
It has been on the increase since March, reflecting the impact of the implementation of the Supreme Court order that old N200, N500, and N1,000 notes remain in circulation till December 31, 2023.
The Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) Money and Credit data for August also showed that Currency-In-Circulation, CIC, stood at N2.66 trillion, representing a 2.7 percent rise from N2.59 trillion in July 2023.
Recall that the implementation of the Naira redesign and withdrawal of old banknotes by CBN sucked in about N1.81 trillion from CoB while crashing Currency-in-Circulation to N1.4 trillion in January 2023.
Meanwhile, Banks’ credit to the Government rose MoM by 0.62 percent from N32.5 trillion in August to N32.3 trillion in July.
Data from the CBN Money and Credit Statistics showed that credit to the private sector also rose by 1.1 percent to N54.7 trillion from N54.1 trillion.
This resulted in a 0.92 percent rise in Net domestic credit to N87.3 trillion in August from N86.5 trillion in July.
Cardoso Focuses On Monetary Policies To Save Naira
The new Governor of the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN), Olayemi Cardoso, has disclosed that he and his team will focus solely on monetary policies to strengthen the Naira.
To achieve this, he explained, they will have to abandon some of the policies of the estwhile CBN, Godwin Emefiele, and his team that has warranted the rising inflation in the country.
Cardoso stated this during his screening by the National Assembly, and confirmation as the CBN Governor on Tuesday..
Responding to questions from the lawmakers, Cardoso said the CBN is faced with numerous challenges which the team had identified and would address them.
“We have identified issues of corporate governance, diminished institutional autonomy, discontinuity of orthodox policies and foreign currency issues.
“Addressing inflation and price stability is the function of the CBN. We will address the issue of foreign exchange unification. If there is a need for interest rate alignment, we will do it for economic growth”, he stated.
To manage the economic policy, Cardoso said size matters, adding that the CBN team had identified macroeconomic indices and will facilitate new ways to attain $1trillion GDP in eight years.
On inflation, Cardoso said each will be tackled based on their causes.
“If the inflation is on food, we should ramp up production of food. If inflation is on energy, we know the challenges of energy. If you are importing, automatically you are importing inflation”, he said.
On money supply, the apex bank Governor said the way money has gone up in Nigeria, “that, itself, is behind inflation. It is the problem. It is a big problem, but going forward, we will do everything possible to ensure that deficit financing does not bring problems to us.
“These are the assurances I can give you coming from outside because we will maintain a good working relationship to block the excesses we had in the past.
“I believe that the CBN under us will have no choice but to embrace a culture of compliance”, Cardoso said, assuring that they will abide by the CBN Act.
“We will not wait for oversight before we interact with the lawmakers. We will have zero tolerance to abuse of processes. We recognize the fact that we need to work closely with these chambers at the National Assembly to ensure compliance”, he said.
According to him, deficit financing and undue money glut are responsible for 50 per cent of the inflation.
Consequently, he told the Senate that there is a need to stabilise the naira to settle Nigeria’s outstanding debts, stating that the country is only spending money in printing currency rather than bringing in revenues.
According to him, the immediate thing to look out for is to address operational issues, which are the unsettled obligations of the CBN wealth of N4 billion or N7 billion.
He stated that Nigeria will not make progress if it is not able to handle that side of foreign exchange rate.
Cardoso also noted that foreign exchange rate is worrisome, hence Nigeria must have a stable exchange rate.
Also speaking, a Deputy Governor, Philip Ikeazor, said the present CBN is going to strengthen governance and focus on monetary policies and not fiscal policies, noting that the country must decide to support the physical majors of the CBN and ensure that exportation thrive.
“We will think outside the box, tackle inflation and the free flow of naira”, he said.
The Deputy Governors screened and confirmed are on the day were: Emem Usoro, Abdullahi Dattijo, Bala Bello and Philip Ikeazor.
Seme Customs Intercepts 62 African Parrots On- Hawk
The new Controller of Customs, Seme Border Command, Timi Bomodi, has has disclosed that the command seized 69 smuggled birds from smugglers who had moved the birds from Kaduna enrout Benin Republic.
The discovery, according to him , was made while customs operatives at the border were on patrol along Seme– Badagry Expressway, acting on credible intelligence intercepted a Benin Republic-bound luxurious bus from Kaduna State..
Two suspects were arrested in connection with the seizure and six of the birds were reportedly dead, due to poor condition under which they were being moved.
The seizures, according to him, were worth over N6,859,932.
“Upon searching the bus, 51 live Green parrots, five live African Grey Parrots, five dead Green Parrots, one dead African Grey Parrot, and one live hawk in iron nets and a Paper Box were discovered. Six of the birds and two suspects were also arrested in connection with the seizure”, Bomodi said.
The African Parrot have a duty paid value (DPV) N6,859,932 only.
Bomodi condemned the criminal act by some members of the society considering that the trade in endangered wildlife contravenes the Convention on International Trade On Endangered Species (CITES) of Wild Fauna and Flora which is an International Agreement between Governments, of which Nigeria is a signatory
He warned the perpetrators of this illegal trade to “stay out of the Lagos – Abidjan corridor or they will continue to incur heavy losses if they so insist.
“In line with the dictates of the Nigeria Customs Service of promoting inter-agency collaboration and synergy, and considering the nature of the item, the seized Parrot will be handed over to the Nigeria Agricultural Quarantine Service (NAQS), Seme Command.
“Officials of the f National Park Service will be informed of this seizure as it is their responsibility to rehabilitate and protect them from further harm”.
By: Nkpemenyie Mcdominic, Lagos
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