Nigeria spends about $1.3 billion yearly on the importation of dairy products such as milk, yogurt, cheese and other milk derivatives, the Minister of State for Industry, Trade and Investment, Aisha Abubakar has said.
The minister who stated this at the inauguration of a stakeholders committee for the development of policy framework to boost the dairy industry noted that domestic consumption of dairy products was bound to increase further with Nigeria’s growing population.
She said the committee was inaugurated as part of efforts to diversify the economy and increase local production in sectors where Nigeria has comparative and competitive advantages.
Abubarkar expressed that the dairy industry had huge potentials such as the creation of millions of jobs and the generation of N300 billion monthly for the country.
She lamented that 85 per cent of Nigeria’s 19.5 million cattle, are owned and managed by small holder, subsistent and nomadic herdsmen, leaving the remaining 15 per cent in the hands of medium and large scale farmers in managed pastures.
Members of the committee include representatives of the Federal Ministry of Industry, Trade and Investment; Federal Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Development; Raw Materials, Research and Development Council and the National Animal Production Research Institute.
The objectives of the policy framework is to attract and achieve local participation in dairy business; ensure local content development of dairy; encourage joint venture opportunities across strategic segments of the dairy business and provide financial relief to boost local growth through the participation of women and youths in the sector.