In a bid to employ over 30,000 jobless youth in Nasarawa State, the management of Dangote Sugar Refinery Plc says it is looking forward to establishing a sugar complex in the state as that will significantly reduce the importation of sugar into the country by 40 per cent.
Aliko Dangote, the President, Dangote Group, during a media chat with journalists, said his group was embarking on Phase II of its sugar project, which will then cover over 100,000 hectares of land. According to him, the sugar plant will be the largest in Africa.
The group’s boss further told journalists that the integrated sugar complex, which will be located in Tunga, Awe Local Government Area of Nasarawa State, comprises a 60,000-hectare sugar plantation, including two sugar factories with the capacity to produce 430,000 tonnes of refined white sugar yearly.
However, shipping data from the Nigerian Ports Authority (NPA) has revealed that Auarius Honor and Ocean Crown would be at Greenview Development Nigeria Limited (GDNL), a subsidiary of Dangote Group, to offload 45,850 tonnes and 46,750 tonnes of sugar respectively. The data further revealed the high demand in the food and drinks sector has increased GDNL’s delivery by 187,000 tonnes from four vessels in May this year.
At the terminal, Common Galaxy came with 48,800 tonnes; Bonny Island, 47,200 tonnes; Chayanee Naree, 46,000 tonnes, and Karteria Bluesrar, 45,000 tonnes. Also, in April, the terminal took delivery of 91,600 tonnes when Unity Bluestar offloaded 47,200 tonnes and Ecoatlantic, 44,400 tonnes.
The shipping data also noted that 67,000 tonnes of sugar were offloaded at ENL Consortium and GDNL, noting that the ENL terminal took delivery of 20,000 tonnes from Doro, while Baltic Mantis discharged 47,000 tonnes at GDNL.
In addition, the Genco Picardy arrived with 46,500 tonnes in February, while two vessels offloaded 101,422 tonnes in January. Also, the Desert Calm berthed with 55,352 tonnes and Pauline, 46,070 tonnes respectively. Finding from Index Mundi, a trade portal revealed that the country has already imported 965,000 metric tonnes of raw this year.
Also, the country imported $1.82 billion in beet sugar, sugar syrups, and other sugar confectionery in the last two years. Sugar is currently on the list of commodities on the foreign exchange restriction list of the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN). Also, statistics from Trade Data Monitor (TDM) based on the Brazilian Foreign Trade explained that Brazil exports rose from $458.9 million in 2019 to $702.8 million in 2020.
According to TDM, Brazil’s cumulative raw sugar exports to Nigeria in 2020/21 season was 1.62 million tonnes, while domestic cane sugar production slumped from 75,000 tonnes to 70,000 tonnes, about 6.7 per cent decline within one year. The country had been projected to meet a 800,000-tonne target of raw sugar production by 2022 as demand by the food and drink manufacturing and retail markets is on the increase.
However, Nigeria could not meet up to five per cent target as data from National Sugar Development Council (NSDC) revealed that in 2016, local production of refined sugar was 25,000 tonnes; 2017, 20,184 tonnes; 2018, 14,918 tonnes and 2019, 28,597 tonnes; 2020, 75,000 tonnes and 2021, 75,000 tonnes.