Nigeria: Govt to support local tiles producers to reduce importation gap

*Dr Kayode Fayemi, Minister of Solid Minerals.

*Dr Kayode Fayemi, Minister of Solid Minerals.

Oscarline Onwuemenyi

26 February 2016, Sweetcrude, Abuja – The Minister of Solid Minerals Development, Dr Kayode Fayemi has announced plans by the Federal Government to support local marble and granite tiles producers to reduce the importation gap.

Fayemi, who stated this during a working visit to FUJIAN Stone Company Limited in Karu, Nasarawa State on Thursday, said the ministry will work to strengthen the institutional support to local companies to enable them expand their production and replace imported brands.

He, however, stressed that the ministry would pay attention to value addition to mining companies in Nigeria that would support the ministry to achieve President Muhammadu Buhari’s diversification plan.

He noted that the company which covered an area of 3,000 acres could only produce 200,000 square metres annually, creating huge gap opportunity for the importation of marble and granite.

“Nigeria needs four million square metres of marble and granite annually; the bulk of tiles we are using in Nigeria are imported; the ministry will support this company to produce more.

“The Managing Director of the company said that averagely, the company is spending N10 million to buy diesel every month for the operation of the organisation. This cost can be eliminated to bring down the production cost, and the cost of selling granite and marble tiles to end users,” he said.

According to him, stones for producing marble and granite tiles are found everywhere in different dimension and colours, adding that, “Nigeria does not lack raw materials but we lack processing opportunity. And this is what our administration is working hard to change.”

Speaking earlier, the Managing Director, Mr Makoji Aduku said FUJIAN was established in 2014 in partnership with Chinese investors and Onshore Frontier Limited of Nigeria.

He said the company processed and marketed the titles locally and internationally, adding that its current production capacity was 1,000 square meters daily, adding that the company produced high quality of marble and granite tiles with surprising competitive prices.

The company has employed 67 skilled and unskilled Nigerians and 10 expatriates.

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