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May 2024

Relief for households as rice price drops 20%

The price of parboiled rice has dropped for the first time this year in April, bringing relief to households and reducing pressure on them.

BusinessDay’s market survey across Lagos shows that a 50kg bag of foreign parboiled rice has declined 20 percent from an average of N90,000 to N72,000 in four months, a decline experts attributed to naira rebound.

Similarly, a 50kg of locally parboiled rice dropped 11.7 percent from an average of N77,000 to N68,000 within the period, a decline experts attributed to reopening of the Nigeria-Niger land border.

After losing 43 percent of its value against the dollar earlier this year, the naira gained 34 percent from mid-March to early April, the highest gain among global currencies and the best performing currency in March, according to Bloomberg.

“I’m happy that rice prices have reduced because as a caterer when I give estimates to my customers, I always factor in price variation so I can pay my workers,” a caterer in Owoshoki area of Lagos who simply gave her name as Olamide.

“I’m really happy now that rice prices have come down. My customers are happy too,” she said.

A trader in a local market in the Kosofe Local Government of Lagos who doesn’t want his name on print said the cost of rice has reduced compared to what it used to be earlier in the year.

“Rice prices have come down due to naira appreciation,” he noted.

Similarly, Chinedu Okechukwu, another trader in Lagos stated that his cost for a 50 kg bag of rice has reduced by N10,000 owing to the recent drop in the prices of rice in the country.

When asked what he thought was responsible for this price decline, he said, “It is because the dollar is coming down that is why rice prices are also coming down. I used to sell a 50kg bag of foreign rice for N90,000 before, but now I sell for N80,000.”

Another trader in the market, who simply identified as Davisco, buys bags of rice from Idi-Iroko, close to the Seme border, also pinned the decrease in rice prices on stronger naira. He said a 50kg bag of local parboiled rice now sells for N68,000.

However, while households are finding respite in the prices of rice – a key staple food in the Nigerian diet, prices of other staples have continued to surge.

Also, the value of naira has declined since last week to as low as N1,339/$, according to data from FMDQ Securities Exchange. QR Code

Published Date: April 30, 2024

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