The Senate has embarked exploring all the archaic Paper Mills in Nigeria, in order to discover what went wrong with the paper mills that gave more than 300, 000 Nigerians jobs.
According to report reaching us, the Senate was troubled by the recent data confirmed by the Raw Material Research and Development Council (RMRDC) that Nigeria lost more than N800 billion Naira annually to paper importation.
The decision of the Senate resulted to a motion titled “The need to revive the Moribund Paper Mills in Nigeria.” The motion was led by Senator Christopher Ekpeyong, PDP, Akwa Ibom North West and supported by 25 Others.
Presenting the motion, Senator Ekpenyong said that “The Senate notes that the Nigerian three Paper Mills: Nigeria Newsprint Manufacturing Company (NNMC), Akwa Ibom State, Nigeria National Paper Manufacturing Company (NNPMC) Ogun State and Nigeria Paper Mill (NPM) Kwara State were established by the Federal Government in the 1960s and 1970s to manufacture Corrugated Cartons, Sack Craft Paper, Kraft Paper, Linear and Chip Board as well as fluting media to meet the country’s needs in writing and printing papers.”
He also mentioned that these Paper Mills were privatized by Government as a result of no of adequate funds to keep them working, thus these paper mills were handed over to private owners through privatization to ensure effective and profitable management.
According to him, the Senate is conscious of paper production as one of the major form of industrialization and educational development worldwide and in Nigeria which would also boost the economy. He said the waning of these mills has however kept the country in huge income deficit as the country depends on imported papers.
He brought to mind that these paper mills not only provides paper but also provided jobs to over three hundred thousand (300,000) people and also an investment of more than 100 billion Naira before the privatization policy by the government.
The Senate has also called on the Chartered Institute of Professional Printers of Nigeria (CIPPON) and Nigeria Customs Service to scrutinize duty on importation of published books and importation of paper as raw materials into the country and make it advantageous to print locally in Nigeria.