Prices of maize may drop as ABP plans to release 300,000 metric tonnes

Worried by skyrocketing prices of foodstuff, the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) will next month release about 300,000 metric tonnes of maize under its Anchor Borrowers Programme (ABP).

The move is expected to mellow current prices of the commodity which currently stand at N155,000 per metric tonne.

In the last quarter of 2020, CBN, working with the Nigeria Customs Service (NCS), facilitate granted import waivers to four agro-processing companies to import 262,000 tonnes of maize to bridge the shortfall in production and augment local production.

President Muhammadu Buhari had earlier in 2020 approved the release of 30,000 tonnes of maize from the National Strategic Grain Reserve to support the Poultry Association of Nigeria (PAN) at a subsidised rate.

National President of the Maize Association of Nigeria (MAAN), Alhaji Bello Abubakar, told some reporters in Abuja that current shortfall in the quantity of maize was because of insecurity in Niger, Kaduna, Katsina, Zamfara and part of Kano states.

Alhaji Bello also identified the activities of hoarders and middlemen who engage in the hoarding of the grain.

As part of the Bank’s financing framework, the CBN has facilitated the funding of maize farmers and processors through the Anchor Borrowers’ Programme (ABP) Commodity Association, Private/Prime Anchors, State Governments, Maize Aggregation Scheme (MAS), and the Commercial Agricultural Credit Scheme (CACS).

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Confirming the release of credit to its members by the CBN, the National President of the Maize Association of Nigeria (MAAN), Dr Bello Abubakar, disclosed that over 200,000 farmers targeted to produce more than 25 million metric tonnes of maize in the 2020/2021 planting season.

According to him, the credit secured by the CBN are being distributed to members along the maize value chain, nation-wide.

He expressed confidence that the support of the CBN would boost production and ultimately ensure availability as well as stability in the price of the commodity.

In spite of cases of insecurity in some parts of the country, he said farmers were committed to meeting the objective of food security.

Abubakar also charged middlemen not to take advantage of the supply gap to hike the price of the grains, even as he assured that farmers would maintain a reasonable price.

He equally urged the Federal Government to put in place mechanism to protect farmers from market triggered shocks.

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Prices of maize may drop as ABP plans to release 300,000 metric tonnes

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Prices of maize may drop as ABP plans to release 300,000 metric tonnes

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