The Raw Materials Research and Development Council (RMRDC) has projected over N36 billion on importation of raw materials and products from 2016 to 2020, if Nigeria does not develop its raw materials.
A RMRDC latest report on “National Strategy for Competitiveness in Raw Materials and Products Development in Nigeria” made available to the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) disclosed this on Thursday in Abuja.
According to the report, a study on the compendium, cost, insurance and freight of raw materials, products imported into the country in the past six years was compiled which covered 97 broad categories of UN double digit commodity classification.
“It is projected that in the next five years (2016 to 2020), the country will spend about N36 billion to import raw materials and products,” it said.
“In 2010, the country spent N6. 6 billion, in 2011 it was N9. 8 billion; in 2012; N5. 6 billion; in 2013, N7 billion; in 2014 it was N7. 3 billion and in 2015 it was N6. 6 billion.
“Nigeria’s import trade as at the end of the first quarter of 2016 stood at over N1 billion, which was dominated by machinery, transport equipment, mineral fuel, chemicals and related products.
“The country’s highest import in the past six years was on nuclear reactors, boilers, machinery, equipment and appliances amounting to N9 billion,’’ it said.
The report said that with the level of dependency on importation, the country would have challenges in funding import bill for the period.
It, however, said that the country needed to develop an evidence-based strategy for government’s intervention and to reduce the importation of raw materials and products.
According to the report, the country lacks a comprehensive data on imported raw materials and products over the past twenty years.
It said that reviving the country’s economy, delivery of inclusive growth and job creation required a deliberate reversal on the trend of importation.