FAO unveils 5-year strategic plan for agric in Nigeria

The Food and Agriculture Organisation (FAO) has given a breakdown of its 5-year strategic Programming Framework for Nigeria (CPF), spanning between 2018 and 2022.

Suffyan Koroma, FAO Country Representative in Nigeria, said in a press statement in Abuja on Tuesday that the framework was to assist Federal Government develop its agriculture sector.

He listed some priority areas which included: Strengthening national food and nutrition security through enhanced nutrition sensitive and climate-smart food systems.

Others are: supporting appropriate and operationally effective agricultural policy and regulatory frameworks, supporting Nigeria’s Economic Diversification Agenda and the promotion of decent employment for youth and women in the agriculture value chains.

It also included improving the efficient and sustainable management of natural resources and ecosystems and enhancing disaster risk reduction, resilience building and emergency management towards strengthening the Humanitarian-Development Nexus.

He also said the framework would ensure efficient management of the country’s natural resources.

He also spelt out a set of medium-term support objectives and results as approved by the FAO’s Regional Office for Africa (RAF).

He said the areas of action were defined in consultation with government ministries, agencies and departments, as well as related stakeholders from academia, Civil Society Organisations (CSOs) and private sector.

He said FAO also considered the humanitarian needs of Nigeria, as contained in various development strategies the government had put in place.



On Wednesday 19th December, Governor David Umahi swept another outstanding laurel from the presidency, exclusively awarded by President Muhammadu Buhari himself, in appreciation of the governor’s towering strings of accomplishments in Agriculture and undying political will to concretize the president’s vision of diversifying the economy.There is everything positive to say about Ebonyi State  when it comes to Agriculture where her name is already etched in the golden books of records. The state proudly recorded major milestone in all areas of the sector in the outgoing year, comparatively setting records that have not been achieved in Nigeria, but one achievement worth re-emphasizing is the recent establishment of a gigantic fertilizer plant.Yes, the state has welcomed with open arms a brand new ultra modern 40 tonnes per hour fertilizer blending plant, first in the entire South East and South South zones. This plant which is commemorative of the state’s advancement in agricultural services and preparedness to drive the sector was symbolically inaugurated by the Minister of Agriculture and Rural Development, Chief Audu Ogbeh. How the state managed to set this project in the face of teething economic challenges is still a stuff of legends.It is no coincidence that Ebonyi state is at the top of every national ranking in Agriculture. The state has singlehandedly brought a revolutionary change that has positively upset the entire firmament of agriculture. Governor Umahi’s agricultural revolution, especially in the areas of rice production is widely acknowledged. It transcends party, ethnic and racial boundaries.Even though PDP, the administration has continued to endear itself to the presidency and policy makers in Agriculture through watershed agric policies and programmes.Minister of Agriculture, Chief Audu Ogbe further confirmed this when he said, “… Anywhere, anytime we mention our successes in Agriculture, your name (Umahi) comes up. Your rice is in every supermarket in Animal and in Lagos and you are one of the five governors who have succeeded in making Nigeria attain almost food sufficient in rice production. You have reduced rice importation by 90 percent and we have saved some seed import in the last 34 months to the tune of 21 billion dollars as a country…”Ebonyi as a state has unknowingly unlocked the potentials of Nigeria Agriculture. The state is now a prominent name and a major player in the current efforts to diversify the nation’s economy and discourage over reliance on oil revenue.Ebonyi has further revved up its agricultural programme with mechanization of farming, assistance in procuring necessary Agricultural inputs like seedlings, fertilizers and pesticides, grant of soft loan to local farmers under the CBN Anchor Borrowers programme.The state is sharpening up plans to introduce six-mega rice cities in the state and any local government area that covers 5,000 hectares for rice production.The governor himself is a farmer who takes more than a passing interest to turn around the fortunes of the state in agriculture. That’s a man who the cap fits!

Reference: http://scannewsnigeria.com

Buhari signs international cocoa agreement

cocoa agreement

To strengthen cooperation between exporting and importing amongst member countries, President Muhammadu Buhari has signed the Instrument of Accession to the International Cocoa Agreement, 2010.

The President, signed the agreement on Monday at the State House, Abuja, after the Federal Executive Council gave prior approval.

Among other benefits, the agreement is to improve the cocoa economy through active and better-centralized project development and strategies for capacity-building.

The 2010 Agreement is also aimed at building on the success of the 2001 Agreement by “implementing measures leading to an increase in the income of cocoa farmers and by supporting cocoa producers in improving the functioning of their cocoa economies.”

“To deliver cocoa of better quality, take effective account of food-safety issues and help establish social, economic and environmental sustainability so that farmers are rewarded for producing cocoa that meets ethical and environmental considerations.” He said.

Following the execution, Nigeria pledges “faithfully to abide by all the stipulations therein contained” in the Agreement.


2018 Outlook: Agricultural Sector

Agricultural sectorThe Nigerian Agricultural Sector

In the quest to diversify the Nigerian Economy, the current government has singled out the agricultural sector as a viable alternative to crude oil. This is why President Buhari proposed ₦118.98 billion as the 2018  budgetary allocation to the agricultural sector. This signifies a 14.6% increase from the 2017 budget which was ₦103.79 billion.

The Nigerian economy which has been driven by the oil sector is gradually shifting towards agriculture. The government believes that that agriculture will be another mainstay and bedrock of the nation’s growth.

In 2016 and 2017, oil production nosedived which meant that government has to look for another source of revenue. It is worthy of note that the activities of the Niger-Delta militant affected the oil production in both years. This action came at a cost as it plunged the country into recession for the first time in 20 years.

President Buhari while presenting the 2018 budget last year said ” diversification efforts have resulted in improved output particularly in the agriculture and solid minerals sectors. The relative exchange rate stability has improved the manufacturing sector’s performance.

“We have got to get used to discipline and direction in economic management. The days of business, as usual, are numbered. Two years, I appealed to people to go back to the farm. I am highly gratified that agriculture has picked up, contributing to the government’s effort to diversify the economy. Rice will stop this year. Local rice which is fresher and more nutritious will be on dishes from now on,” he added.

Buhari also talked about the ongoing initiatives in the sector. This included the over 33,000 hectares of irrigation projects that have increased water availability in key food-producing state

2018 outlook

In order to encourage and improve local agricultural produce, the government is taking steps to curb the illegal importation of food into the country. This was why the government called a stakeholders meeting last year on the smuggling of food items into Nigeria.

During that meeting, the Minister of State for Agriculture and Rural Development, Senator Heineken Lokpobiri, said that government will ensure that food products brought into Nigeria are not sold in the country.

Most of the foods products being smuggled into the country include rice, poultry products, and fisheries.

The government has prioritized the agricultural sector and are hopeful that in 2018, it will generate more income from the sector. The government has been advised to provide storage and processing facilities this year as a lot of food crops are wasted due to lack of storage house, and lack of processing facilities. This advice was given by Muda Yusuf who is the DG of Lagos Chambers of Commerce and Industry (LCCI).

Ref: Leadershp.ng

N4.16 trillion non-oil revenue projection-how realistic?

N4.16 Trillion

N4.16 trillion is the budget projection for non-oil revenue projection presented by President Muhammadu Buhari on November 7, 2017. This is the first time in the history of Nigeria’s budget that amount will be allocated to the sector.

The Federal Government said that the projection is in line with its Economic and Recovery Growth Plan, which shows a gradual shift from oil whose dwindling fortunes is becoming a reality.

The breakdown of the N4.16 trillion non-oil revenue in the 2018 budget shows that N794.7 billion is to be realized from the share of companies income tax while value-added take was projected at N207 billion. The Federal Government’s independent generated revenue stood at N847.9bn while amnesty income tax was placed at N87.8bn.

Various recoveries are expected to add N512.4 billion and N710 billion from the proceeds of the restructuring of government’s equity while other sundry incomes to be realized were projected at N678.14bn.

Other productive sectors must be engaged – Financial experts

An economist and current Head, Banking and Finance at Nasarawa State University, Keffi, Dr. Uche Uwaleke, commended the Federal Government’s effort in ensuring the recovery of the economy. He, however, stressed the need for engagement of other productive sectors like agriculture, solid minerals, tourism and manufacturing that can help to boost the Gross Domestic Product (GDP).

“The need for a solid and sustained growth of the economy and improved export base can only be achieved through improving the agricultural, solid minerals, manufacturing and other critical sectors of the economy which must be functional and significantly contributing to foreign trade and profit of the country,” he said.

The don said the current composition of the budget showed that a large percentage of revenue will still come from oil because company tax and other revenue from recoveries cannot be ascertained yet. This shows Nigeria’s economy is still dependent on a single product and should, therefore, be a source of worry.

“Although The Federal Inland Revenue Service Voluntary Asset and Income Declaration Scheme (VAIDS) is laudable, which is ensuring that people come into the tax net, so many people in Nigeria still do not pay tax making, these projections seem unrealistic,” he added.

A development expert and the Director of African Centre for Leadership, Strategy, and Development, Dr. Otive Igbuzor, also said there is a variance between projected parameters and the actual results as highlighted in the budget.

“When you look at the 2017 budget that was signed in June this year, what has been achieved is very little compared to what was projected especially in the aspect of revenue generations and capital projects. Although the economy is recovering, it is high time for more initiatives by the Federal Government apart from tax and proceeds from recovered loot to exploring other sectors that can make us achieve self-sufficiency,” he said.

Sustenance of agricultural policies is the way out – Agric experts

The Head, Department of Food Technology at the University of Ibadan, Prof. Charles admitted that the issue of the economy is very critical to the Nigerian setting.

“We all know that we just came out of recession and the issue of the recession came about because we were solely dependent on oil revenue, thus because of the drop in oil revenue, our revenue as a nation also dropped.

“The solution in driving the economy in a long run is by promoting not only agriculture but also agricultural produce which can be processed by adding value through the food value chains. At a time, agriculture was contributing about 40% of Nigeria’s GDP before oil,” he said.

He also said the importance of agriculture now cannot be overemphasized as the large sums of money realized from oil business is no longer realizable.

“As we talk, close to 70% of Nigerians are in the agricultural sector. So in terms of overall contribution to the GDP, agriculture is still very important, although its earnings are second to oil, it is still the greatest employer of labour,” he added

The don maintained that developed economies have made job creation their major priority, adding that promotion of small-scale industries is important as it will serve as a catalyst to the larger industries.

He added that the Agricultural Research Council of Nigeria can be funded to research on different policies which are aimed at boosting agricultural programmes, food production, and manufacturing technology as it will go a long way in diverting attention from oil.

Similarly, Commissioner for Agriculture, Nasarawa State, Jameel Zakari, said the 2018 budget ought to have given more consideration to the agricultural sector as an ideal for an oil producing country like Nigeria that has suffered from the drop in the price of crude oil. He said agriculture will go a long way in job creation and reducing too much value attached to oil.

Zakari also advocated for the permeation of the Anchor Borrowers Programme (ADP) of the Federal Government to the 36 states of the federation evenly so it can flexible and accessible to farmers.

He said that other agricultural programmes like the Youth Empowerment in Agricultural Programmes (YEAP) targeting more involvement of youths in agriculture, must be sustained for increased employment and boosting large-scale production.


FG accused of procuring substandard agricultural inputs for cocoa farmers- Cocoa Farmers Association Of Nigeria

Cocoa farmers have accused the Federal Government of damaging their crops by procuring substandard agricultural inputs for farmers.

The farmers, under the aegis of Cocoa Farmers Association of Nigeria on Monday fingered the Federal ministry of Agriculture for sharp practices by procuring such substandard inputs.

This was contained in a statement jointly signed by the National President, National Secretary, National Vice President (South-West) and Public Relations Officer of the association, Chief Raimi Adeniji, Adeola Adegoke, Ayodele Joseph and Yerima Mustapha respectively.

According to the association, some of the inputs allegedly procured by the ministry include fungicide, insecticides, and cutlases.

The statement reads in part, ” The procured inputs particularly fungicide had destroyed our cocoa trees and farms.

The association also noted that it had earlier appealed to the ministry of agriculture to always consult farmers whenever critical issues relating to “the procurement of inputs in order to know our demand for the year.”

The statement said the association had written series of letters to the Minister of Agriculture, Chief Audu Ogbe, on the matter but there was no response from him.

The group threatened to stage protests across the country if nothing is done on the matter.

“We strongly appealed to Mr. President to move into the matter urgently to save cocoa farmers from an untimely death due to the havoc caused by the Federal Ministry of Agriculture, ” the statement added.

The officials of the ministry in Ondo State contacted on the matter declined to comment, referring DAILYPOST to the headquarters of the ministry in Abuja.

One of them, who did not want his name in print said, ” We can’t say anything on the matter here, you can contact the Abuja office.”


Source: dailypost.ng

FG to provide more funds to Agriculture- Buhari

President Buhari over the weekend said that the FG which has created measures to diversify the economy will sustain these measures by providing more funds to agriculture in the 2017 budget.

While speaking to reporters in Nairobi, Kenya over the weekend on the margins of the sixth Tokyo International Conference on African Development (TICAD VI), He said African nations had a lot to learn from Japan on the development of the agricultural sector.

According to him, the FG intends to put in more resources in 2017 budget, with focus on the procurement of machinery for land clearing, fertilizers, pesticides and training of less-educated farmers, as farm extension instructors.

He went to say that some success has already been recorded this year in a number of states, as the government identified 13 states that will be self-sufficient in the production of rice, grains, and wheat before the end of 2018.

“We are positive that soon we will be able to export those food products. We are also lucky that the farming season in the northern part of the country has been very good and we are expecting a bumper harvest this year,” the president said.

The president said that African countries should take a cue from Japan in the area of rapid economic growth, hard work and advanced technology and that these factors should encourage Africans to work harder and solve its development challenges.

The President also requested for Japan to increase participation in the Nigerian economy.

FG to Optimize Aquaculture For Economic Wealth and Job Creation – Lokpobiri

The Honourable Minister Of State for Agriculture and Rural Development, Sen. Heineken Lokpkobiri has attended a high level meeting of key leaders and Ministers of Fisheries and Global Seafood Sectors in Iceland.

The concept of the meeting in Iceland is to further enhance the blue Bio-economy, with the aim of optimizing economic use of our oceans and aquatic resources. The theme of the meeting was “ promoting the Blue Bio-economy, making best use of ocean opportunities”. The meeting was organized in collaboration with the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations (FAO).

Senator Lokpkobiri who led the Nigerian delegation, in his submission said the present Administration of President Muhammadu Buhari has greatly expanded her political momentum that has resulted in the development and promotion of the implementation of the backward integration in aquaculture, thereby increasing wealth creation, economic gains and happy individuals and families in Nigeria today.

The minister said the background and objective of the forum on Bio-economy has over the last decade become a widely used term in global policies which are related to various issues such as food security, sustainable production, and energy needs.

The Blue Bio-economy is the blue sector of the economy, focusing on initiatives and applications being applied in fisheries and fish processing, aquaculture, coastal tourism, marine Biotechnology and other related sectors.

The concept of a “blue economy” came out of the 2012 Rio + 20 conference, this has played an important role in achieving the post-2015 Global Sustainable Development Goals (SDG’s).

The world seafood congress 2017 attracted over 500 seafood professionals from around the globe. There were international expert ,speakers, keynote presentations and industry specific fisheries presentations, panel discussions and workshop sessions.

Lere-Adams, A.B

Acting Director (Information)



Source: http://fmard.gov.ng/fg-optimising-aquaculture-for-economic-wealth-and-job-creation-lokpobiri/

Osinbajo commissions Edo State Fertilizer plant today


The Vice President, Prof. Yemi Osinbajo commissioned the Edo state fertilizer plant today. The plant which was originally built by the Lucky Igbinedion administration was  rehabilitated by WACOT limited in collaboration with current state government which is been led by Governor Godwin Obaseki

This commissioning in line with the Federal Government’s actualization of the Presidential Fertilizer Initiative (PFI) which was launched in 2016 by President Buhari as part of the administration’s drive towards achieving self-sufficiency in the area of food and economic diversification through agriculture.

The rehabilitation of the plant is also part of the current governor’s Accelerated Agriculture Initiative designed to support and actualize the job creation and food sustainability vision of Federal Government through Public Private partnership (PPP).

WACOT Limited is a company that leads the market in agro-processing, manufacturing, and distribution of certified agriculture inputs including seeds, fertilizer, pesticides, etc

The plant is located at Auchi in Edo State.

Fresh Tomatoes Arrive Lagos by Rail from Kano after 58 Years



For the first time in 58 years, tomatoes arrived in Lagos from Kaduna on Tuesday. The train which left Kano by 10am yesterday morning arrived at the Lagos terminal by 10 pm. This marked a major achievement by the Buhari government.

This was disclosed by Emmanuel Itoya Ijewere (who is one of Nigeria’s eminent businessmen with vast experience and interests across the banking, finance and agricultural sector) at the First Bank maiden Agric Expo 2017 which held at the Eko Hotels and Suites.

He thanked everyone who made it possible including the minister of Agriculture and went on to say it will be a weekly affair.

According to him, at ₦200,000 per tonne, the country lost 2.8 million tonnes of tomatoes in 2016. This put the total loss at ₦5.6 million due to poor storage facility

Emmanuel Ijewere was a former Chairman of Agriculture and Food Security Commission.