Nigeria’s sugar industry is set to provide 114, 000 jobs for the citizenry by 2023.
This is even as the clamour for the country to diversify its economy gain momentum.
Accordingly, the National Sugar Development Council, NSDC, on Thursday assured that the sugar production sector will create over 114, 000 jobs by 2023 if the government can invest in the sector.
The Executive Secretary, NSDC, Dr Latif Busari made this disclosure while speaking during a workshop on “where we are in three years” at the Royal Spring Holiday Inn, Osogbo, Osun State.
The event was part of the Southern Region Sugar Sensitization Workshop and it had the theme: “Sustaining the Gains of NSMP for National Self-Sufficiency in Local Sugar Production”.
Busari who noted that the sector had helped in improving job creation, as well as the reduction in the price of sugar and lowering the incidence of sugar smuggling, added that the sugar sector is a capital intensive industry.
He urged the state governments in the region to support the sugar project, saying that the sector also has the capacity to generate 400megawatts of electricity if given adequate support.
He also lamented the neglect of the sugar industry since its rejuvenation in 1980-1981 in the savannah saying: “since then till now, there has been no real improvement except if you mention the establishment of the refinery in Apapa, Lagos.
“This industry by 2023 is expected to produce 1.8m tonnes of sugar locally and 161 litres of ethanol. We are aslo expecting to generate 400million megawatts of electricity and create over 114,000 jobs, hich is going to be a combination of both permanent and seasonal job,” he stated.