Tomato Policy To Create 60,000 Jobs – FG

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The Ministry of Industry, Trade and Investment, Okechukwu Enelamah, has said the new policy on Tomatoes will create at least 60,000 additional jobs in fresh fruit production and processing.

The Ministry of Industry, Trade and Investment, Okechukwu Enelamah

 

The minister stated this yesterday in Abuja ,adding that this is in line with the Federal Government’s goal of boosting production, improving the value chain and attracting investment He explained that the tomato sector policy was developed and is being implemented in collaboration with the Federal Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Development, Federal Ministry of Finance, Federal Ministry of Water Resources, Central Bank of Nigeria, Bank of Industry and the National Agency for Food and Drug Administration and Control According to him, the policy will increase local production of fresh tomato fruit required for fresh fruit consumption and processing; increase local production of tomato concentrate and reduce post-harvest losses.
Th ese price-based measures,according to him are Classifi cation of Greenhouse Equipment as Agricultural Equipment in order to attract 0% import duty. “Also, to stop the importation of tomato paste, powder or concentrate put up for retail sale.
“Stopped the importation of tomatoes preserved otherwise by vinegar or acetic acid; Increase of the tariff on tomato concentrate to 50% with an additional levy of $1,500/MT” “Restriction of the importation of tomato concentrate to the seaports to address the abuse of the ECOWAS Trade Liberalisation Scheme (ETLS)” “Inclusion of tomato production and processing in the list of industries eligible for investment incentives administered by the Nigeria Investment Promotion Commission (NIPC).
According to the Minister, this new policy is at the core of the Nigeria Industrial Revolution Plan (NIRP), which prioritizes agro-allied businesses, an area that we have comparative advantage. He continued: “these measures ultimately, accelerates the growth of the manufacturing industry and deepens diversifi cation.” “Nigeria imports an average of 150,000 metric tons of tomato concentrate per annum valued at $170million mostly due to inadequacy in capacity to produce tomato concentrate.

 

“Current demand for fresh tomato fruits is estimated at about 2.45million metric tons per annum (MTPA) while the country produces only about 1.8million MTPA. “Despite the supply gap, about 40% of fresh tomato produce is lost due to wastage arising from poor post-harvest handling and inadequate storage,” he said

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