The Federal Executive Council (FEC) has approved the establishment of 10 “very large” rice mills to enhance the milling capacity of rice in the country.
This was revealed Wednesday by the Minister of State for Agriculture, Heineken Lokpobiri, while briefing State House correspondents at the end of FEC meeting, held inside the council chamber of the Presidential Villa, Abuja.
Mr Lokpobiri said Nigeria needs a minimum of 100 large mills.
He said as at today the country has about 21 “but the federal government in its wisdom decided that today we should approve the establishment of 10 new rice mills at the total cost of N10.7 billion.”
He said the new mills will be given to the private sector to manage and they will be expected to pay back within a given time frame as will be agreed between the Bank of Agriculture and the rice mills.
He said about 30 states are growing rice in the country.
He also said the memo he submitted to FEC showed that the 10 new rice mills will be located across the six geopolitical zones of the country.
The ten states according to Mr Lokpobiri include Kebbi, Zamfara, Benue, Kogi, Bayelsa, Anambra, Kaduna, Niger, Ogun, and Bauchi.
“The capacity of the rice mills is 100 tones per day each,” he said.