Why is Nigeria Not Cashing In On The Dramatic Global Surge In The Demand For Tissue Paper?

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Over the last fortnight or so, the surge in the demand for tissue paper, kitchen roll, wipes and napkins has been dramatic worldwide as the coronavirus surge spreads
Across the world, departmental stores, retail chains and supermarkets are having to deal with panic buying, leaving their shelves bare
Worldwide, the printed tissue paper market size was valued at $657.4m in 2018 and I would imagine that this has at least doubled if not tripled by now. With this virus, the market must be worth at least $2bn by now. This is only going to keep growing
Now, let me crack you up. Do you know that Nigeria spends N50bn ($135m) importing tissue products annually?
We import tissue product despite the fact that we have the Nigeria Paper Mill Jebba, Nigerian Newsprint Manufacturing Company, Oku-Iboku and Nigerian National Paper Manufacturing Company in Iwopin virtually sitting idle
Although these plants were primarily set up to produce newsprint, they are modular and can easily be switched to produce tissue paper. Bear in mind Nigeria is also the open defecation capital of the world
Since 1999, we have tried to privatise all three mills but alas, the process has simply not worked. Nigeria is one economy where an industry immediately collapses when you privatise it. As you know, this has been seen with other sectors including Ajaokuta, Nepa, NNSL, etc. Cronyism and the lack of a vibrant domestic bourgeoisie means these industries do not end up in the hands of industrialists
According to the Food and Agricultural Organisation, Nigeria has over 9m hectares of forest. Can someone please explain to me how such a nation is not a major forestry products exporter?
In the current circumstances, I think what our trade and industry minister should be doing is speaking to major retail chains worldwide, asking them to come and take over these Nigerian paper factories and establish a global supply chain
Have we considered how much we could generate from the export of tissue paper if we asked the likes of Walmart, Sainsbury, Tesco, etc to take over our paper mills? Personally, I like to think big, so would set myself an annual target of $1bn in revenue.

Written by: Ayo Akinfe

A London-based journalist who has worked as a magazine and newspaper editor for the last 20 years.

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Why is Nigeria Not Cashing In On The Dramatic Global Surge In The Demand For Tissue Paper? - Brand SpurWhy is Nigeria Not Cashing In On The Dramatic Global Surge In The Demand For Tissue Paper? - Brand Spur

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Why is Nigeria Not Cashing In On The Dramatic Global Surge In The Demand For Tissue Paper? - Brand SpurWhy is Nigeria Not Cashing In On The Dramatic Global Surge In The Demand For Tissue Paper? - Brand Spur

Latest News

Asia Pacific Rayon Raises US$300m from National and International Affiliated Banks to Expand Production Capacity

  • Continued capital expenditure aims to boost production and support the recovery of Indonesian economy
  • Loan agreements aligned with Indonesian Government's strategy to drive investment growth in 2021
  • APR is a member of the RGE group of companies


JAKARTA, INDONESIA - Media OutReach - 12 April 2021 - Asia Pacific Rayon (APR), the largest integrated rayon fiber producer in Indonesia, today announced that it has secured a syndicated loan facility of Rp 4.5 trillion (US$300 million) with national and international affiliated banks. The funding will be used to support continued capital investment in the company's production facilities at Pangkalan Kerinci, Riau Province, Sumatra.

APR is vertically integrated through its supply chain, from renewable fiber plantations to high-value textile development. It commenced operations in 2019 and was formally inaugurated by President Jokowi Widodo in February 2020. APR plans to increase its production capacity over the coming year to capture the strong growth potential of viscose staple fiber (VSF), strengthening its market position in Indonesia and in export markets across the region. APR is a member of the RGE group of companies. Founded by Sukanto Tanoto, RGE manages a group of resource-based manufacturing companies with global operations.

Read Also:  SUNTORY NIGERIA SEEKS TO BOOST SALES WITH NEW PRODUCT LAUNCHES, EXPANDING DISTRIBUTION

The syndicated loan participating banks are PT Bank Rakyat Indonesia (Persero) Tbk, PT Bank Central Asia Tbk, PT Bank Pan Indonesia Tbk, PT Bank Pembangunan Daerah Jawa Barat, PT Bank Woori Saudara Indonesia 1906 Tbk and PT Bank KEB Hana Indonesia

The joint mandated lead arrangers and bookrunners for the syndicated loan are PT Bank Rakyat Indonesia (Persero) Tbk, PT Bank Central Asia Tbk, and PT BANK Pan Indonesia Tbk.

Basrie Kamba, Director, Asia Pacific Rayon, said: "This funding will be used to support continued investment in our operations in Kerinci. Rayon fiber, or viscose, is a textile raw material derived from sustainably managed plantations. As rayon is both renewable and biodegradable, it supports the trend towards sustainable fashion in Indonesia and in other markets around the world."

APR's planned expansion is aligned with the Indonesian Government's strategy to increase investment and boost employment to support the recovery of the country's economy and address the continued impact of the COVID-19 pandemic. Following the passing into law of the Omnibus Bill in October last year to streamline investment and stimulate job creation, President Widodo said last month that investment would be the key factor in achieving 5% economic growth in 2021.

"This loan facility and our continued investment in our operations are evidence of the growth potential of the viscose rayon sector in Indonesia and around the world. We are committed to supporting the Indonesian Government's efforts to improve the investment climate in export-oriented manufacturing industries, and its efforts to create upstream jobs in plantations and the processing of raw materials, and downstream opportunities in textile factories and related businesses," said Basrie.

Hari Setiawan, Executive Vice President of PT Bank Rakyat Indonesia (Persero) Tbk said : "As Representative of JMLAB and all lenders, I hope this collaboration will be useful to support the growth and development of PT Asia Pacific Rayon in increasing production and operations and also supporting the recovery of Indonesia's export growth."

"Support from BCA and other Banks reflect our confidence in APR, and as our contribution to promote a sustainable and environment friendly industry. We hope this cooperation will tighten our relationship as well," said Susiana Santoso, Executive Vice President of PT Bank Central Asia Tbk.


About Asia Pacific Rayon

Asia Pacific Rayon is the first fully integrated viscose rayon producer in Asia. Located in Pangkalan Kerinci, Riau, the company uses the latest production technology to produce high-quality rayon to meet textile needs. APR is committed to becoming a leading viscose rayon producer with the principles of sustainability, transparency and operational efficiency, serves the interests of the community and the country, and provides value to customers. APR is part of the RGE (Royal Golden Eagle) group of resource-based manufacturing companies. Sustainability is fundamental to APR. The APR Sustainability Policy, updated in September 2020, include additional commitments on pulp sourcing and clean manufacturing.


About RGE

RGE Pte Ltd manages a group of resource-based manufacturing companies with global operations. Our work ranges from the upstream, comprising sustainable resource development and harvesting, to downstream, where our companies create diverse value-added products for the global market. Our commitment to sustainable development underpins our operations, as we strive towards what is good for the community, good for the country, good for climate, good for customer, and good for company. RGE was founded in 1973. The assets held by RGE companies today exceed US$20 billion. With more than 60,000 employees, we have operations in Indonesia, China, Brazil, Spain and Canada and continue to expand to engage newer markets and communities. www.rgei.com

Why is Nigeria Not Cashing In On The Dramatic Global Surge In The Demand For Tissue Paper? - Brand Spur
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