The Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) has approved the release of 50,000 metric tonnes of maize to 12 major producers, from strategic maize reserve (SMR) under the Anchor Borrowers’ Programme (ABP).
The release is to help moderate and control the prices of maize in the Nigerian market.
Daily Trust reports that the release of maize to the companies, which is the third of such releases, is also intended to check the activities of middlemen aimed at hoarding the product and causing artificial scarcity.
The CBN listed recipients of the grains to include Premier Flour Mills, Crown-Olam, Grand Cereals, Animal Care, Amobyn and Hybrid Feeds. Others include Obasanjo Farms, Zartech, Wacot, Sayeed Farms, Pandagri Novum and Premium Farms.
Confirming this, CBN spokesman, Osita Nwanisobi, said the release would crash the price of maize, reduce pressure on the market, and make the product directly available to feed producers, thereby reducing the price of poultry feed.
Nwanisobi also said the CBN would continue to facilitate the funding of maize farmers and processors through ABP Commodity Association, Private/Prime Anchors, state governments, Maize Aggregation Scheme (MAS), and the Commercial Agricultural Credit Scheme (CACS).
The National President of the Maize Association of Nigeria (MAAN), Dr Bello Abubakar urged middlemen to desist from taking advantage of the supply gap to hike the price of the grains.
CBN had in January 2021, released 300,000MT of maize, which forced a substantial reduction in the price of maize.