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  • News - North Central - Benue
  • Updated: May 23, 2024

Benue govt issues 90 days ultimatum to Nigerian Brewery

Benue govt issues 90 days ultimatum to Nigerian Brewery

The Benue State Government  gave a 90-day ultimatum to the Nigerian Brewery to commence production at its plant located along the Makurdi-Gboko Road.

The directive on Wednesday, was part of efforts of Governor Hyacinth Alia administration’s determination to revive the state’s industrial sector.

The ultimatum was issued  by the Managing Director of the Benue Investment and Property Company Limited,BIPCL,  Dr.Raymond Asemakaha (CFA), during his meeting with representatives of the Nigerian Brewery at the BIPC corporate headquarters in Makurdi.

Dr. Asemakaha expressed the state government’s readiness to seeing companies operating in Benue return to full production, stating that there are wealth of raw materials, such as sorghum, as well as a readily available workforce to support the brewery’s operations.

“We’re giving them (Nigerian Brewery) a 90-day ultimatum to resume production because if it is sorghum, we have sorghum. If it’s manpower, we have manpower. 

“Government has introduced easy ways of doing business with a one-stop shop, and so with tax holidays, it is important for you to quickly return to production,” Dr. Asemakaha said.

He highlighted the state’s efforts to create a more business-friendly environment, including the introduction of a one-stop shop for ease of doing business and the offer of tax holidays to incentivize investors.

The MD  lamented that the Nigerian Brewery failed to utilize the backward integration that would have transformed Benue farmers but rather choose Kaduna State in spite of the fertile land the state has for sorghum cultivation.

In response, Joy Egolum, the Corporate Affairs Manager covering the East and Middle Belt for the Nigerian Brewery, acknowledged the state’s efforts and expressed the company’s willingness to consider the incentives offered.

However, she noted the challenges associated with the immediate resumption of operations, stating that even routine maintenance can be time-consuming.

“We will come back to you very soon; we don’t need 90 days, but anyone who runs a production line will agree with me that even doing maintenance takes a longer time. So it’s not possible for us to do production within that time frame, but we understand how passionate you are, and we will get a response before the 90 days and proceed from there,” Egolum said.

The Benue State Government’s initiative to revive the state’s industrial sector and attract investment underscores its commitment to economic development and job creation for its citizens.

It would be recalled that BIPC, about two weeks ago, announced the company’s intention to launch a new beer factory in Makurdi after the company raised alarm that beer distributors made over ₦850 million monthly sales in Benue

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