Nigeria’s leading commodities exchange, AFEX, has said that it is partnering with the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) and the Standards Organisation of Nigeria, (SON) to strengthen commodity standards in the country.
The initiative was announced at a workshop in Kano on Saturday.
The exchange said the initiative will aid the development and adoption of a grading and standardisation system that follows international best practices.
The workshop, titled ‘Commodity Standards Sensitization’, brought together stakeholders including government agencies, farmer groups, processors, agriculture commodity exporters, merchants/off-takers, collateral managers, development partners, and other agriculture experts.
The stakeholders gathered to provide input on the commodity standards and also identify the challenges of the existing framework, to develop a roadmap for a vibrant ecosystem.
In his address, Kano State deputy governor, Nasiru Gawuna, said that commodities exchanges can serve as a key catalyst for the development of critical sectors because it offers a credible platform for trading and facilitating the export of commodities.
Mr Gawuna, who represented Governor Umar Ganduje, noted that to record success, commodities must conform with internationally accepted standards.
He noted that seeking to enhance agricultural productivity of small and medium-scale farmers will improve value addition along three priority value chains of rice, wheat and tomato through the Agro-Processing, Productivity Enhancement and Livelihood Improvement Support Project (APPEALS).
The chief executive officer, AFEX, Ayodeji Balogun, said: “We are building a trust economy in which you receive exactly what you pay for. Having such a market enables liquidity, pricing transparency, and more contracts, options, and marginalized services to processors and investors. Future price stabilization will be achieved in this manner.”
The Director-General of SEC, Lamido Yuguda, said it is globally recognised that a unique feature of a commodities exchange is the standardisation of the commodities traded on its platform. He noted that the establishment of relevant standards would be transformational for the Nigerian commodities trading ecosystem.
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