Dr. Graham Hefer, Managing Director of Okomu Oil Palm Company has expressed deep concern over continuous importation of palm oil which he says pose serious threat to local industry.
“We are very disappointed to see that in the last four months, there have been a lot of adulterated and illegal importation of crude palm oil and Olein into the market.
” We see that we can get olein freely available in supermarkets in Nigeria. They are from Indonesia or Malaysia. These are banned products that are not permitted into the country,” he told journalists in Benin City during the company’s Awareness Week to mark the Health Safety, and Environment Day.
He said that already the profits of local producers are begining to dip and plantation owners forum of Nigeria (POFON) are crying over the conspiracy to cripple the sector.
” Records from the Malaysian palm oil board of statistics showed that in the first quarter of this year, about 103,000 tons of palm products were imported into the country, this is now about four times the size of the 2018 import.
“If you go further and look at the amount of oil that Malaysia sold to Benin Republic, to Ghana, to Ivory Coast and the like, you will find that for instance, in Benin Republic, there are more palm trees per square meter than there are people in the Benin Republic if you just do the calculation.
“It is obvious that we are under extreme stress, it is not just for our company, the whole oil pipeline stream right down to the end user, everybody is now being affected negatively and we are begging the government to once again take cognizance of this,” said Dr. Hefer.