The Impact of Industrial Policy and Economic Recession on Primary Pulp and Paper Production in Nigeria

Ogunwusi A. A.


The Nigeria Paper Industry has undergone several travails.  The import substitution policy of the early 1960’s (1962 – 1968) encouraged the establishment of three pulp and paper mills in the country.  Two of the mills, the Nigeria Paper mill, Jebba and the Nigerian Newsprint Manufacturing Company (NNMC), Oku-Iboku were completed and performed well in the 1980’s to 1990’s.  However, the third mill, the Iwopin Pulp and Paper Company, Iwopin was 85% completed before work stopped on it in the 1990’s as a result of policy implementation and inconsistency problems.  The recession of the 1990’s worsen the situation in the industry.  By 1996, the mils stopped production as a result of the negative effects the of import substitution policy. The  policy enthroned a regime of dependence on importation of raw materials, equipment, spare parts and skilled manpower. The recession that occurs between 2010 to 2016 as a result of the reduction in the price of commodities and oil worsen the situation in the primary pulp and paper manufacturing sector due to inadequate availability foreign exchange to fund importation.  Nevertheless, the period saw the establishment of three new recycling plants that depend solely on waste brown paper.  The new mills a total of more than 1 million tons per annum has led to increase in local capacity for the manufacturing of corrugated liners and packaging papers in Nigeria.

Keywords: Recession, Pulp and Paper, Policy, Import substitution.


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