Nigeria’s Bank of Agriculture (BOA) has signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) with the country’s Ministry of Agriculture for a 3.6 billion naira (US$22 million) facility for farm mechanisation programme in the country, as part of efforts to boost agricultural production.
According to local media reports on Monday, the partnership between the two outfits will further promote the government’s transformation agenda for the agricultural sector.
BOA’s Chief Executive Officer Mohammed Santuraki said agricultural mechanisation programme was critical to the real sector’s revival scheme.
“Mechanisation is very important for so many reasons. Like I always say, anytime we talk about agriculture, we always give statistics, which in my view is very distressing. Any time we discuss agriculture, the first thing we say is that 60 per cent of our people are involved in agriculture, which is shameful.
“Here we are having over 60 per cent of our workforce involved in agriculture and yet we import over US$12 billion worth of food every year,” Dr. Santuraki said.
“In America, only two percent are involved in agriculture and they are net exporters of food. We need to change that and have less people in agriculture and to be able to do that. We need to do it more efficiently.
“We need to have less people in agriculture so that others can do other things that are also important to the economy. Because most of our food production is done by the small farmers, we have that number of people in agriculture,” he said.