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Thursday, September 12, 2013

ATA is govt- enabled private sector agenda to grow agriculture

Anthony Nwakaegho/NaijaAgroNet
The Agricultural Transformation Agenda (ATA) has been described as the largest ever government-enabled private sector-led effort to grow agriculture in Nigeria.
The Acting Director, Communication, Federal Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Development , Greyne Anosike made this remark,  stressing that ATA is a comprehensive effort aim at increasing domestic food production, reduce dependence on food imports and expand value addition to locally produced agricultural products.
Anosike noted that through de-regulation, attractive financing, concentrated infrastructure investments, and competitive policies, the sector will be more productive, efficient and competitive.
Findings by NaijaAgroNet revealed that the ATA has the capacity to create 3. 5 million jobs and add 20 million tons to the domestic food supply by 2015.
According to the Agriculture Minister Dr Akinwunmi Adesina, “shifting focus towards farming is justifiable and a task that must be accomplished in his time as the nation is facing stiff competition from neighbouring African countries in crude oil sales and the United States of America recent oil discovery, and in neighbouring countries such as Ghana, Angola, among others.”
The Agriculture Minister said it has been his dream that attention be shifted from the oil sector to agriculture for it to be driven as a form of business and not just as a mode of life for the old.
NaijaAgroNet recalls that since the Agriculture Minister came on board, he had introduced policies that have been favourable to farmers which have changed their orientation of hitherto not being seen as stakeholders in the sector, especially in fertiliser’s distribution.
NaijaAgroNet recounts that his laudable achievement is seen in the mode of fertiliser distribution that had destroyed the corrupt middlemen and saving the nation a whooping N25 billion in 2012, while the Growth Enhancement Scheme (GES) allows the farmers key into the e-wallet system, allowing the farmers get seeds in a defined mode and the usage of technology in driving the ATA.
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