Shoprite Suspends Expansion Plans In Nigeria

An employee restocks shelves with food products inside a Shoprite Store in Enugu, Nigeria. Shoprite has been expanding its operations in Nigeria since 2002.

Africa’s largest grocery retail chain has revealed that it will not be opening any more outlets in the country for the time being. This is coming after its 25th Nigerian store was opened just a few months ago,

According to the company’s CEO, Pieter Engelbrecht, “We had to impair four loss-making stores in Nigeria… we have slowed down in terms of our expansion until we get better clarity in terms of banned products and foreign exchange fluctuations.”

He added that the chain’s Nigerian supermarkets were currently only carrying “half of our ranges because of the products banned.” The government had placed some restrictions on import of rice, flour and frozen meat.

There are two main factors behind these restrictions on imports – a shortage of foreign currency and a desire to boost domestic food production.

But according to some media reports, domestic production is unable to meet demand, and paradoxically, smuggling is flourishing while the prices of staple foods are on the rise across the nation.

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