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Thursday, 9 October 2014

Nigeria spends N90bn on ceramics annually

 The Director General of Federal Institute of Industrial Research, Oshodi (FIIRO), Dr. (Mrs.) Gloria Elemo, has said that Nigeria spends well over N90 billion on ceramics annually.sunnews reports.

Mrs. Elemo, who was represented by the Director of Project Development and Design, Dr. Patrick Irabor Irabor, said that recent statistics revealed that Nigeria now ranked 9th in the world among the heaviest consumers of finished ceramic products.

“Such ceramic products are imported from overseas at huge foreign exchange cost estimated to be N90 billion. While the global expenditure on ceramics is expected to reach $408 billion by 2018, Nigeria is expected to have woken up from being a sleeping giant in ceramic industrial sector to consume the huge non-metallic solid mineral resources of the country,” he said.

The FIIRO boss stated this at the International Ceramics Trade Fair organised by EPIA Technologies Limited in Lagos.

She explained that without ceramics, the automotive industry would not produce or assemble cars; the wristwatches cannot work; there will be no power transmission and the health sector will be dysfunctional, pointing out that people’s broken bones are replaced with ceramics.

She said that apart from the conventional ceramics plates and flower vases, ceramic also includes bricks, floor and roof tiles, tablewares, pottery products, sanitary wares, wall tiles and earthen wares, among others.

To move the sector forward, she stated that there was absolute need to review specific science, technology and engineering base curriculum for use in the nation’s tertiary institutions to improve on the capacity development in the sector.

Speaking at the event, the Managing Director of Epina Technologies Limited, Prof. Patrick Egakhide Oakhina, said the exploration, exploitation and utilisation of the non-metallic solid mineral resources should be encouraged by government to attract investors to the sector.

“The lack of raw materials beneficiation and processing primary industries would require special policy direction and government support to initiate collaboration between stakeholders to invest in the raw material processing industry to serve ceramic and numerous other industries,” he said.

“In the same vein, Nigerian citizens are spending their scarce resources on maintaining generating sets to secure power supply at over N1.6 trillion in the last 10 years when we have large deposits of solid minerals including coal which can be converted to power generation.”

He explained that coal is still the largest source of electricity power worldwide beside nuclear, gas and other plants.

China remains the largest coal producer in the world, followed by USA with 993 million tonnes, India 589 million tones, while the European Union produces 576 million tonnes.
Source: sunnewsonline

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