The Minister of Industry, Trade and Investment, Adebayo Adeniyi, has stated that companies involved in cashew processing will enjoy income-tax-free for three years which can be extended to five years.
Adebayo, who was represented by the Permanent Secretaries Ministry of Industry Trade and Investment, Dr. Evelyn Ngige, stated this at the 16th edition of the annual conference of the African cashew Alliance in Abuja, assuring that companies involved in cashew production and processing are exempted.
The Minister said the event is holding in Nigeria for the first time since its establishment in 2006, adding that the event which is alterated amongst member countries is held annually to avail cashew-producing countries of the opportunity to share experiences and attract investment to the sub-sector.
He said: “This event has continued to be of immense support to the over 48 cashew-producing African countries in providing access to important knowledge and Information that assist in the development of the cashew value chain of their respective countries.
“You will recall that since the inception of this administration government has continued to pursue deliberate policies to diversify the economy away from its over-dependence on the oil and gas sector. It is in this regard that Nigeria like other member countries of the ACA, has sustained its commitment to the provision of enabling environment and incentives for the development of the cashew value chain.
”These efforts have enhanced activities in the subsector, resulting in an increase in the commodity’s production in the country. Presently, some government incentives in the sector include. Zero percent (0%) duty on all Agro-allied machines and equipment acquired for the production of cashew. Capital allowances are granted 100% to companies involved in cashew production and processing.
”As of today, Nigeria produces about 260,000 metric tonnes of cashew nuts annually. Plans are ongoing to raise the annual production capacity of cashew nuts to well over 500,000 metric tonnes. Out of the current production figure of 260.000 metric tonnes, 180.000 metric tonnes are traded as raw cashew nuts. 15,000 metric tonnes are processed into cashew kernels and about 10,000 metric tonnes of the kernel are exported.
”Cashew production is limited to only about 10 states out of the 36 states and the Federal Capital Territory. The leading state in cashew nuts production is Kogi State. Other states involved in the production of cashew nuts include Abia.”