Palm oil producers in Nigeria have been posting record revenues and profits in the past 5 years.largely on account of import restrictions that more or less guaranteed their position as suppliers of last resort to diverse commercial and individual users, As reported by BusinessDay, showing Nigeria importing less palm oil as local producers report expansions, there are also opportunities in the global multibillion-dollar industry, and locally too, where supply has not completely met demand.
When Indonesia, the world’s largest exporter of palm oil, banned exports of the commodity, to safeguard its own domestic consumption on account of increasing uncertainties and disruptions due to the Russia-Ukraine crisis, it put pressure on edible oil prices globally.
For Nigeria, it was a reminder of its lost status as a giant in palm oil production, as it was neither able to step up to meet the needs of a global market nor guarantee domestic supply and avoid erratic price surges. Emmanuel Ijewere, vice-president of Nigeria Agribusiness Group (NABG), said This is a further wake-up call that needs concerted efforts to give producers the necessary infrastructural support to become truly productive and globally competitive. he added that Presco and Okomu in Nigeria are two of the biggest players in the world, and there are also the smaller producers, many of whom cannot expand their production because they cannot modernise their processing capabilities.
BusinessDay analysis shows that Presco’s profit grew to N18.8 billion in 2021 from N5.2 billion in the previous year.
The company’s revenue jumped by 97.5 percent to N47.2 billion in the period under review from N23.9 billion in 2020. In 2019, its profit was N3.8 billion, down from N4.3 billion in 2018. For Okomu Oil, its profit grew by 55.5 percent within nine years, reaching N14 billion in 2021 from N9 billion in 2012. This was the highest profit after tax recorded, based on its financials published on the Nigerian Exchange Limited. The profit was hinged on the 60 percent increase in revenue to N37.5 billion in the financial year ended December 2021 from N23.4 billion in 2020. The revenue growth was on the back of 85 percent local sales while only