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The Rice Processors Association of Nigeria (RIPAN), Kano State Chapter, has attributed the hike in price of rice from 19,000 to N23,000, to the increase in price of paddy rice.

Alhaji Abba Dantata, a member of RIPAN stated this in Kano Monday during a joint press briefing with Kano State Public Complaints and Anti-Corruption Commission (PCACC) over the hike in price of rice in in the state.

“There is no way we can sell 50kg bag of rice below N23,000; cost of production is so high.

“From April to date, a ton of paddy rice, which used to cost N180,000, now costs N225,000,” he said.

He explained that the high rate of foreign exchange  and the difficulties in sourcing same for the maintainance of  industrial machines, as well as the hike in price of diesel, also contributed to the high cost of rice.

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According to him, Central Bank of Nigeria withdrew its Agro Fund Loan in 2020 without notice, making rice processors to seek for an alternative source of funding.

“Some of us went to commercial banks to borrow money at 20 per cent, 22 per cent and 25 per cent interest, depending on the bank,” he explained.

On his part, the Executive Chairman of PCACC, Mr  Muhyi Magaji-Rimingado, said the meeting was aimed at finding solutions to the problem of hike in price of rice.

He said the commission would take take steps to check hoarding  of food items, especially paddy rice, to ensure its availability.

(NAN)

Vanguard News Nigeria

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