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There are strong indications that natural rubber may soon be relegated from its number one prime position as an export commodity which earns foreign exchange for Cross River State. 


Head of the regional office, Nigeria Export and Import Bank, NEXIM, in Cross River State, Soni Oseghale disclosed this when he met with the President of the National Association of Rubber Producers, Processors and Marketers Association of Nigeria, NARPPMAN, Prince Peter Igbinosun and other rubber stakeholders in the state.

Oseghale said NEXIM envisages that palm fruits, cocoa and natural stones are gaining increasing attention from NEXIM and other lenders for export more than rubber.

He said if rubber must be given credit attention again, rubber farmers and stakeholders must consciously amplify the potentials embedded in it as an export commodity.

“There’s a need for rubber stakeholders to strive to bring it back to the front burner of discussion.

“I want to enlighten you that NEXIM favours farmers whose crops or yields have been processed and are at the final stage for export. We don’t really grant starters access to credit facilities.

“Once farmers have processed their yields, they can approach us for discussion, advice and other supports. Our area of interest is majorly to support exports of Nigerian products.”

According to him, people used to see NEXIM as a place where they would go for their ‘national cake “but it is no longer so, which is the reason genuine farmers and others had difficulty accessing facilities for export.”

The National President of NARPPMAN, Igbinosun on his part told rubber farmers that they will constitute themselves into what he called friendly pressure groups to draw attention to the plight of the rubber sub-sector.

According to him, banks and other lending houses are sceptical of the sub-sector due to the long gestational period of seven years.

He stressed that there are vast plantations but investors are not forthcoming and this threatens the future of rubber in the country.

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Hi, I,m Pospi Otuson. A Nigerian Blogger, Social Entrepreneur and Convener of the renowned Boki Business Conference. CEO/Founder of Possibility Desk, the largest online consulting platform for possibilities in the world.

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