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CBN hopes to smother inflation with release of 50,000 MT of maize into markets

By Centus Nweze

16

The Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) is hoping to reduce inflation pressure by releasing 50,000 metric tonnes of Maize into the Nigerian market.

Inflation rise in the country has always been tied to rice in consumer price index, CPI, which is brought on by rice in commodity prices in Staples like maize.

Aside being a corner Stone in home consumption, maize is also critical to poultry and brewery industries.

But the apex Bank’s February 2021 release of Maize in fulfilment of its pledge to reduce the price of the commodity, was done through the Anchor Borrowers’ Programme (ABP) to major poultry feed producers and poultry producers in the country.

The CBN facilitated release of the 50,000 metric tonnes of Maize in the second week of February, has made an impact as the Maize Market has recorded a reduction in price from N200,000.00 per metric tonnes to about N180,000.00 per metric tonnes.

The apex bank said that It is still anticipated that the current price will further reduce.

Major beneficiaries of the February release include: Premier Flour Mills, Crown – Olam, Grand Cereals, Animal Care, Amobyn and Hybrid Feeds. Others include Zartech, Wacot, Sayeed Farms, Pandagri Novum and Premium Farms as well as the South West, South-South, North West and North Central chapters of the Poultry Association of Nigeria (PAN).

The benefiting companies represent the major players in the poultry value chain in the country.

The release of the 50,000 metric tonnes of Maize forestall the pressure and reduce the activities of intermediaries (middlemen) in the Nigerian Maize market.

It will be recalled that the Central Bank of Nigeria had in January this year, announced to release 300,000 metric tonnes of Maize into the Nigerian Maize Market. This is to bridge the shortfall in production and augment local production of the commodity.

The current shortfall in the quantity of maize available in the market, that CBN is working on mitigating, is attributed to activities of banditry, drought in some parts of the country last year, activities of hoarders and middlemen as well as insecurity around the major maize producing belt of Niger, Kaduna, Katsina, Zamfara and part of Kano states.

As part of the Bank’s financing framework, the CBN facilitates the funding of maize farmers and processors through the Anchor Borrowers’ Programme (ABP) Commodity Association, Private/Prime Anchors, State Governments, Maize Aggregation Scheme (MAS), and the Commercial Agricultural Credit Scheme (CACS).

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