The Federal Government says Nigeria’s agricultural sector is under-performing and has been recording low productivity.
Minister of Agriculture and Rural Development, Mohammed Nanono, who said this added that food import level was also affecting the country negatively.
Nanono said this during the inauguration of the National Agcelerant Technical Committee in Abuja on Thursday.
He was quoted in a statement issued by his ministry as saying, “Our agricultural sector is characterised by low productivity, underperforming agricultural value chains, with food import level negatively affecting our trade balance among others.”
The minister said the new committee would mobilise financial support for small farmers and also provide technical assistance towards improving their capacity in the area of new agronomic practices and latest technologies.
He noted that with the committee, the government would help reverse the negative trend in the agricultural sector.
Nanono said, “We need to start reversing this trend by harnessing the hug potential in the agricultural sector for sustainable development through partnerships and engagements with wiling stakeholders who genuinely believe in our beloved nation and are ready to lend us helping hands.
“The AgCelerant is a novel value chain orchestration platform connecting smallholder contract farming and producers with banks, insurers, input providers and agro-industries to control risks and improve the productivity, security and welfare of millions of farmers in Sub-Saharan Africa.’’
He charged the committee to develop areas of partnerships, come up with clear objectives for the programme, develop strategies and implementable frameworks for the programme, and prepare work plans and budgets over the programme’s lifetime.