The high price of cement and sugar has been attributed to the higher demand over supply of the products in the country.
In a statement, one of the country’s major cement production firms, BUA Cement Plc explained that the high price of cement is because Nigeria doesnt have enough supply.
BUA Cement Plc said, “In Nigeria, every day people come up to say we are self-sufficient in cement and that Nigeria can now start exporting cement; it not true. Look at the numbers: Nigeria is over 200 million people today in terms of its population.
“If you look at the production of cement, last year, we were under 30 million tonnes.
“In fact, last year was higher than the year before. Which means that in 2019, we were doing between 26 million and 27 million.
“I am talking about production, and not installed capacity, which is another thing entirely. I am talking about actual cement production.”
The firm added that it does not have enough capacity to produce in order to meet the demands of the market.
“If you check, you will see that most countries in Africa are doing between 170kg to 200 kilogrammes per head. So, Nigeria is actually producing less than in other country in Africa, apart from may be Niger Republic. So, that means that we do not have enough capacity. Nigeria can actually take 200 kilogrammes per head, but we are not able to do that, hence the reason why the price of cement is high. The moment you have any problem in any of the plants in Nigeria and there is a shut-down or any challenge, immediately, you will see the impact in terms of price going up,” BUA said.
On the other hand, the high price of sugar can be attributed to the existing Backward Integration Programme (BIP) policy that made it very difficult to have more producers of the product in Nigeria.
The BIP policy states that unless you are seen to be doing a plantation you would not be allowed to do sugar refinery. It is as a result that there are just about three producers of sugar. This makes it nearly impossible to meet the demands of Over 200 million Nigerians in the market.