Diversification only way out of poverty â€“ Buhari
President Muhammadu Buhari on Tuesday
maintained that the only way out of poverty in
Nigeria is through diversification of the economy.
Diversification of the economy through agriculture
and solid minerals mining, he said, is the way to
He spoke in Kebbi State while officially launching
N40 billion â€œAnchor Borrowersâ€™ Programmeâ€
organized by the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) for
rice farmers across the country and launching of
the 2015/2016 dry farming season.
The ABP programme aims to create an ecosystem
to link out-growers (Small Holder Farmers) to local
To tackle challenges of poor funding, the CBN has
set aside the sum of N40 billion from the N220
billion Micro, Small and Medium Enterprises
Development Fund (MSMEDF) for farmers at a
single-digit interest rate of 9.0 per cent.
Stressing that the discovery of oil in Nigeria ought
to have complemented her agricultural
productivity, President Buhari said it was almost
allowed to replace agriculture to the detriment of
According to him, the falling oil prices in the
international market have necessitated urgent need
to diversify the economy.
He said: â€œEconomic diversification is no longer an
option for us as a nation. It is the only way to
reclaim economic momentum and drive to
prosperity. The only way to do this is to develop
our agricultural production.â€
He said that the ABP will go a long way in achieving
food security for the country.
He added: â€œIn 2014 for example, the total demand
for rice in Nigeria was estimated to be about 6.1
million metric tonnes of which 2.6 million metric
tonnes was produced locally while the rest was
â€œEqually, the demand for wheat in Nigeria is now
about 5 million metric tonnes, a significant amount
of which can be produced locally.â€
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