During a sensitization workshop organized at the 6th floor of the Nigerian Investment Promotion Commission (NIPC) on the proposed ban of palm oil importation to the EU, Mr Kurt Cornelis, the Head of Cooperation, EU Delegation to Nigeria and Economic Community of West African States (ECOWAS) clarified the confusion regarding the proposed ban on palm oil importation from Nigeria to the union.
“It is not true that the EU was planning to ban palm oil importation to the union from Nigeria. “We are not considering any ban on oil importation from the third world countries, we think there is some confusion somewhere,’’ he said.
Cornelis said that the EU Parliament and Council reached an agreement on bio-fuel for renewable energy in June 30 2018. According to him, the renewable energy directive does not propose a ban on palm oil. He however said that the EU would focus on investment and partnership with banks in its next programme which is stated to last for 10 years.
Yewande Sadiku, the Executive Secretary, Nigerian Investment Promotion Commission (NIPC), who received a letter from the Ministry of foreign Affairs was represented by Hajiya Ladi Katagum, a Director in the commission who said that the workshop was organised to address the issue.
Katagum said that the objective of the commission was to encourage, promote and coordinate investment in the Nigerian Economy and the commission is expected to monitor all investment promotion activities, initiate and support measures which shall enhance the investment climate in Nigeria.
Panel discussions were held and moderated by various professionals in the field to suggest ways through which the nation can improve on the palm oil production standards, as well as proffer solutions to the bottle necks in the oil palm industry.
Mr Hilary Uche, The National President, Oil Palm Growers Association of Nigeria said that the major problem facing the oil palm industry was lack of capacity building for small scale farmers. He called on the Federal Government to encourage development in the sector as it could create the highest job opportunity in the country.
He said that the federal government needs to play a vital role in checking and ensuring high standards in the production of palm oil.