Aliko Dangote, president of Dangote Group, said the company would invest $450 million in a large scale rice processing mill to process over 200, 000 metric tonnes of paddy rice in Niger State over the next three years.
Dangote stated this, Monday, at the opening of the two-day 2017 Niger State Economic Submit with the theme “Impact Investment for Advancing Agricultural Economy and Innovation” in Minna.
He said that a state-of-the-art fully integrated sugar refining industry would also be established.
“Our company is also establishing a state of the art fully integrated sugar industry involving the development of over 30,000 hectares of sugar cane plantation and the production of about 500, 000 metric tonnes of refined sugar.
“We are very excited about these investments and look forward to kick-starting this mutually beneficial partnership with the government and good people of Niger State,” he said.
Dangote, who was represented by Alhaji Mansur Ahmed, noted that the company also planned to invest over $1 one billion in agricultural production and processing of selected commodities like sugar, rice, and tomatoes across the country.
According to him, Niger has become the destination of choice for investment in the agricultural sector given its rich and vast arable land.
He said that the company was poised to leverage on that toward a virile agriculture based economy.
Dangote said that the group would also continue to engage governments at the federal and state levels where there is great potential to explore investment opportunities.
This is coming as the acting President Yemi Osinbajo says that Niger state has the capacity to produce assorted food crops that will feed the African continent.
“I’m currently discussing with the governor on a robust economy, and the vision is for Niger State to feed at least 50% of Africa”, Osinbajo said.
He reiterated Federal government’s willingness to partner with the state government to rehabilitate infrastructure in their areas.
Ramatu Yardua, state’s commissioner for investment, commerce and industry, in her remark said the aim of the summit was to market the state as an investment destination in agriculture considering its enormous potential which was largely untapped.
Yardua said that agriculture was key to moving the country out of recession, adding that the state was committed to creating a conducive and enabling environment for would be investors.