National Institute for Pharmaceutical Research and Development (NIPRD), says it is partnering with Kaduna State Government (KDSG) to process Eucalyptus oil in the state.
Eucalyptus oil is the generic name for distilled oil from the leaf of Eucalyptus, which has a history of wide application as a pharmaceutical, antiseptic, repellent, flavouring, fragrance and industrial uses.
The News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) reports that there are about 10,000 hectares of Eucalyptus growing in the wild in Kaduna state.
The Director General of NIPRD, Dr Obi Peter Adigwe, told newsmen in Kaduna on Monday that the institute had presentated the Business case and Feasibility Study for the commercial production of Eucalyptus oil to the state government.
”We presented a complete business case and feasibility study to the government of Kaduna State, and based on that partnership, we have now started talking about implementing the processes detailed in that document between it, NIPRD and partners,” he said.
Adigwe explained that the mandate given to them after the discussions was to come up with investors to work with the State government which has agreed to share in the risk process.
”People have indicated interest and we are going to look at the criteria that was given to us by KDSG so that we can filter investors to suit the matrix by the government,” he said.
The DG said the partnership will help in improving access to health care, job creation and revenue generation for the state.
He said, since his appointment as the DG nine month ago, one of his mandates was to ensure that researches undertaken by the institute and its partners will lead to utilisation of the abundant natural resources in Nigeria as products to improve health care.
”We developed a contextual processing protocol where we focus on areas where different States have comparative advantage, developed process where those natural products can be processed using local people along with technology,” he said.
Adigwe said that the institute would ensure that the product gets to markets to serve the health needs of all Nigerians.
According to him, the initiative would ensure knowledge transfer in the processing of the products, thus generating income for people involved in the processing as well as the partner states and Federal Government.
According to him, they were in Kaduna in December 2018 to present the contextual processing protocols to the government and were mandated to develop a business case and a feasibility study, which they did.
”We have taken inventory of what was on ground and we found out that Kaduna State had over 5 -10 thousand hectares of eucalyptus growing in the wild.
“We will work with the state to deploy a processing protocol to ensure the particular processes become eucalyptus oil which is used for various purposes to improve health care.
”And this can also help to generate income for the state and investors while local people will be trained and their capacity built to earn income while involved in the process,” he said.
Adigwe assured that the institute will in a month time get the investment and technical teams as well as the KDSG together to agree on the plan.
“Already the plantations and technology exist, all we need are partners who believe in the core mandate of improving access to health care,” the DG said.