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By Hussein Yahaya, March 8 2018
Flourf Mills8Flour Mills of Nigeria Plc, (FMN Group) has completed its biggest agricultural investment in Nigeria with the establishment of the Sunti Golden Sugar Estate in Niger State.
The facility, located on the banks of River Niger, in Mokwa axis of the state, is owned by Sunti Golden Sugar Estates (SGSE) Ltd. a subsidiary of Flour Mills of Nigeria Plc and is expected to be commissioned by President Muhammadu Buhari next Thursday.
A statement by Flour Mills revealed that the sugar estate features 17,000 hectares of irrigable farmland and a sugar mill that process 4,500 metric tonnes of sugarcane per day. At full capacity, the estate is expected to produce 1 Million tons of sugarcane which roughly translates into 100,000 metric tonnes of sugar yearly.
Enclosed within a 35-kilometer dyke, the production facility area is 15,100 hectares, with a cane area that features a maximum output of 10,000 hectares. The dyke provides flood protection from the River Niger. Over N1 billion was invested in the state-of-the-art irrigation system that will ensure the efficient cultivation of sugar cane, with infrastructure that includes drain pumps, pump stations, and a power grid.
The estate is the purest representation of the Federal Government’s Nigerian Sugar Master Plan (NSMP) with an ambitious backward integration programme that intends to set Nigeria on the path to self-sufficient sugar production.
The farm, at peak production, is expected to provide direct employment for about 10,000 people yearly, and impact up to 50,000 people indirectly, including 3,000 small-scale out growers who will be cultivating sugarcane to feed the mill.
The estate has brought infrastructure benefits to the surrounding community, with 28 communities in total taking advantage of a new 30-kilometer road, plus expansive road networks that provide a variety of access routes to the homes of the indigenes. Drains, culverts, and flood-protection walls have also been constructed.
“The project illustrates the desire to reduce sugar importation, save billions in foreign exchange, boost local capacity, and reduce unemployment by putting thousands of Nigerians to work,’’ the statement read in part.
The commissioning of the Sunti Golden Sugar Estate will be the first step towards a collective dream of agricultural progress for all in Nigeria.
https://www.dailytrust.com.ng/flour-mills-completes-n50bn-sugar-estate-in-niger.html

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