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FG earmarks N50b for agric equipment

FG earmarks N50b for agric equipment

The Federal Government has earmarked N50 billion for Mechanisation Intervention Support Fund to speed up the establishment of 1,200 private sector-driven Agricultural Equipment Hiring Enterprises nationwide.

President Goodluck Jonathan made this known in Abuja on Monday while inaugurating 100,000-metric tons silo complex and the private sector-driven Agricultural Equipment Hiring Enterprises.

Represented by Vice-President Namadi Sambo, the President said his administration would also begin the provision of mechanisation support grants to farmers to enable them to access agricultural mechanisation services.

“As part of our drive to limit the use of hand hoes and cutlasses, and replace them with modern agricultural equipment, I direct the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) to set aside the sum of N50 billion Mechanisation Intervention Fund.

“This support fund will allow and speed up the full establishment of the 1,200 private sector-driven Agricultural Equipment Hiring

 

Enterprises across all the states of the federation. The Federal Government will, for the first time ever in the history of Nigeria, begin the provision of mechanisation support grants to farmers to allow them to hire agricultural mechanisation services.

“The Growth Enhancement Scheme and the e-wallet scheme of the Federal Government will be expanded to provide subsidised electronic mechanisation support vouchers to farmers, which they will use to pay the agricultural hiring enterprises to provide mechanisation services for their farms,“ he said.

According to him, as the country produces more food, it has become necessary to expand food storage capacity and reduce post-harvest losses.

He, therefore, said that the development of strategic grains reserve was central to government policy of stabilising food prices for consumers and assuring guaranteed minimum prices and market access for farmers.

The President noted that Nigeria was the first in Africa to develop the electronic wallet scheme for reaching farmers with subsidised farm inputs via mobile phones.

He also said the country was also leading in providing mechanised services support from the private sector to farmers using mobile phones

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