In a bid to make Nigeria self-sufficient in food production, the Dangote group is investing heavily in Dangote Rice, one of its subsidiaries in Nigeria.
The group is set to launch a multi-million naira 25,000 hectares of rice outgrower scheme in Sokoto, North-west of Nigeria with a prospect of hundreds of employment opportunities for the rural communities.
Dangote Rice plans to produce 225,000
MT of parboiled, milled white rice by the end of 2017, which will satisfy 4% of the Nigerian market demand within 1 year.
“Our model can then be successfully scaled to produce 1,000,000 MT of milled rice in order to satisfy 16 percent of the domestic market demand for rice over the next five years,” the company said.
President of the Group, Aliko Dangote, said the company on Wednesday, flag off the investment with a pilot project of 500ha by Goronyo dam, (second largest dam in the country, after Kainji) in Goronyo community.
President Muhammadu Buhari has earlier in the year promised Nigerians that the change they voted for in 2015 will manifest more through agriculture in the year. Adding that the era of over-dependence on oil for foreign exchange revenues is gradually waning as agriculture is picking.
Dangote had in 2014 pledged to invest $1 billion dollars in Nigeria’s commercial rice farming; making it the largest single investment ever made in rice production on the continent.
Dangote is Africa’s richest man with an estimated fortune of about $25 billion. He holds lucrative interests in diversified business sectors including cement, flour, sugar and agricultural production across African nations.