What Nigeria Partner to do with Chinese Investors On Irrigation Farming, Rice Production
The Nigerian Government has endorsed a partnership between the All Farmers Association of Nigeria (AFAN), investors linked to the Chinese government, as well as Brains and Hammers private firm to boost irrigation farming.
According to a statement issued on Sunday by Mrs Juliet Okeh, an Information Officer in the Ministry of Agriculture, the partnership is aimed to deepen irrigation techniques and technology to enhance crop production in Nigeria.
Okeh said, “The Minister of Agriculture and Rural Development, Alhaji Muhammad Nanono, has said that the ministry is in support of the partnership between the All Farmers Association of Nigeria (AFAN), investors from the Chinese government and Brains and Hammers firm.
”The Minister disclosed this when he received a delegation from the Chinese Investors and Brains and Hammers, through the All Farmers Association of Nigeria (AFAN), who paid him a courtesy visit in Abuja”.
The statement quoted Nanono as saying there were ample investment opportunities in agriculture that needed more partnerships, new approaches and modern technologies, especially irrigation technologies, to explore crop production in all seasons and expressed delight over the collaboration, saying that the ministry had always been interested in any intervention that would help in the development of the agricultural sector in Nigeria, particularly those that were private sector driven.
He pointed out that the foundation of the development of the Chinese economy had been largely agriculture based, as the country was well known for huge production of beans, rice, sorghum and soya, which are also cultivated mostly in northern parts of Nigeria.
The Minister expressed delight that Brains and Hammers, a well-known investor in real estate in Nigeria, was diversifying into farming, particularly in the development of the irrigation system. ” If you will be able to work on these dams, creating irrigation, definitely the entire farming system in Nigeria will transform,” he said.
Nanono emphasized on the need for the expansion of Nigeria’s irrigation system to boost the production of crops, such as maize and rice, during the dry season, so as to stop their importation into the country.
The President of AFAN, Alhaji Farouk Mudi, in his remark said the purpose of the visit was to partner with the ministry, on the provision of seeds, infrastructure, to facilitate the speedy actualisation of the collaboration.
Mr. Wang Yun, an Agricultural expert from the Chinese investor group, said that they were in Nigeria to partner with the FMARD, through AFAN, to bring the Chinese experience of over 30 decades in agriculture to boost crop production, especially rice and maize in the country.
He assured that Nigeria would not only produce rice for consumption, but would become a major exporter of the commodity in Africa, adding that at the end of the four-year collaboration, China may even be importing rice from Nigeria.
The representative of Brains and Hammers, Mr Abu Abubakar, while making his remark, said that the company was best known for building of houses, but decided recently to diversify into Agriculture with the desire to ensure food security in the Nigeria.
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