Senate seeks ban on importation of palm oil, kernel


Senate Tuesday urged the federal government to ban the importation of palm oil and kernel and fund the ministry of agriculture for greater production of the cash crop.

It also mandated its committee on agriculture and rural development to summon the Nigerian Institute for Palm oil Research (NIFOR) to explain why it failed to deliver on its mandate.

These resolutions were sequel to an adopted motion titled, ‘Urgent need to halt the importation of palm oil and its allied products to protect the palm oil/kernel industry in Nigeria’ sponsored by senator Francis Alimikhena representing Edo north senatorial district.

Presenting his motion, Alimikhena said the unbridled importation of palm kernel and allied palm products into the country was threatening the ongoing campaign for the diversification of the economy through agricultural production and export.

He affirmed that, ‘developing the oil palm industry is one of the ways that Nigeria can reduce poverty and create mass employment’.

On this premise, Alimikhena flayed the current flood of importation where in 2017, he said 450,000 tons of palm oil was imported at the whooping cost of N116.3 billion.

The lawmaker, however, submitted that the federal government must reverse this unwholesome economic trend with investments in the local palm industry and protect the local producers from unnecessary imports.


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