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Untapped potential in agriculture can help food security – USAID/Nigeria

by Business News Report

The Deputy Mission Director USAID/Nigeria, Sara Werth, says untapped potential in the nation’s agriculture can help in achieving food security and economic growth. Werth said this at the launch of the National Agricultural Technology and Innovation Policy (NATIP) 2022 – 2027 on Friday in Abuja. She said that agriculture is important to the growth and development of the  economy, adding that in 2020, agriculture contributed over 25 per cent to the Gross Domestic Product (GDP).

She said the new policy is a deliberate effort by government to deploy knowledge and good agricultural practices to fast-track agricultural development. Werth said it would provide a roadmap for some of the most pressing challenges the agriculture sector is facing. She added that the policy outlined opportunities to attract public and private investments into agriculture and agribusiness to modernise the industry. According to her, the approach will lead to a diversified economy that guarantees access to nutritious food, growth and employment opportunities. She said the policy came at a critical time as Nigeria and the world are facing the worst food security crisis in years. She said, ” Food, fuel, and fertiliser prices have risen sharply over the last year.

”The Russian invasion of Ukraine is exacerbating the issue, and we are now seeing indications of a growing global food crisis.” Dr. Bedru Balana, Acting Chief of Party, Feed the Future Nigeria Agriculture Policy Activity and Research Fellow International Food Policy Research Institute (IFPRI)-Nigeria,  said the policy would guide efforts to improve food and nutrition security. He said, “As a long-term collaborator and having engaged extensively in development of the NATIP, we are very pleased to support this launch event.” Rep. Amos Magaji, Rep. Member Zango, representing Kataf/ Jaba Federal Constituency of Kaduna State, said there is need to reduce the level of unemployment among the youths with innovative agriculture. (NAN)

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