NIGERIA’S agricultural productivity which is currently growing at 1.3 percent is insufficient to meet food and raw materials demands, Chairman, Board of Directors, Sterling Bank Plc, Mr Asue Ighodalo has said.
Ighodalo made this known at the 4th Agriculture Summit Africa (ASA) 2021 organised by Sterling Bank in Lagos.
Themed: “Building the New Agro Order”, the Sterling Bank boss noted that it was unacceptable and an ironic paradox to have raw materials shortages and food insecurity amidst so many fertile and arable lands across Africa.
In his words, “In the last three years, our bank has paid attention to and concentrated resources on the health, agriculture, renewable energy, education and transportation sectors. These when put together represent the heart of Sterling, and right in the middle of our strategy is the agriculture sector
“With millions at risk of being deprived of their means of livelihoods occasioning major concerns around food security and with an estimated population of over 200 million growing at an annual rate of three percent.
“Regardless of recent interventions, agricultural productivity in Nigeria growing at about 1.3 percent is insufficient to meet our food and raw materials demand” Ighodalo cautioned.
The Chairman emphasised that Nigeria’s agriculture deficit continues to widen despite government interventions and a wide range of opportunities in the sector
He identified low yields per hectare due to shortages in quality of inputs, climate changes, among others as inhibiting factors to the growth of the sector.
Ighodalo, however, revealed the bank’s commitments to changing the narrative by catalysing revenue growth to rev the continent into equal level with the developed world which he added was in the middle of the 4th industrial revolution.
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