Nigeria has been projected to become the world second largest rice importer in 2019, the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) has said.
The department, revealing this in its latest Rice Outlook released on Tuesday, said China will emerge as the world’s largest buyer.
The report read, “On an annual basis, consumption and residual use is projected higher in 2018/19 in Angola, Benin, Burkina-Faso, Cambodia, Cote d’Ivoire, Cuba, Haiti, India, Indonesia, Kenya, Madagascar, Nigeria, the Philippines, Sri Lanka, and Vietnam.
“China and Nigeria are projected to remain the largest rice importing countries in 2019, followed by the EU, Cote d’Ivoire, and Iran.
“Nigeria and Egypt are projected to account for the bulk of the 2019 import increase. Imports in 2019 are also projected to be larger than a year earlier for Benin, Burkina, Cameroon, Cote d’Ivoire, EU, Iran, Iraq, Kenya, Malaysia, Mali, Senegal, the United Arab Emirates and the United States.
“Global rice consumption (including a residual component) in 2018/19 is projected at a record 488.4 million tons, down 0.1 million tons from the previous forecast but up more than 1 percent from a year earlier.”
Recall that following the floods that hit some parts of the country, the minister of agriculture and rural development, Audu Ogbeh, warned that the country may experience rice shortage if appropriate measures are not taken to replant.