Buhari lauds Nigerians over ‘$21bn’ savings on food import

A corn farm used to illustrate the story.
A corn farm used to illustrate the story. [Photo credit: The Guardian Nigeria]

President Muhammadu Buhari has lauded Nigerians for curbing excessive taste for foreign products, which he said has positioned the country for food self-sufficiency and resulted into savings of over $21 billion.

The president said the savings will be deployed to other critical areas like infrastructure, education, health care, and many others.

Mr Buhari was reacting to recent disclosures by the Central Bank of Nigeria governor, Godwin Emefiele, who spoke at the 2018 Annual Bankers’ Dinner, where he said:

“Noticeable declines were steadily recorded in our monthly food import bill from US$665.4 million in January 2015 to US$160.4 million as at October 2018, a cumulative fall of 75.9% and an implied savings of over US$21 billion on food imports alone over that period. Most evident were the 97.3% cumulative reduction in monthly rice import bills, 99.6% in fish, 81.3% in milk, 63.7% in sugar, and 60.5% in wheat. We are glad with the accomplishments recorded so far.”

Mr Buhari said with the commitment of Nigerian farmers, and the support given by the government, “in no distant future, food importation will be completely alien to us, and we will even export actively, thus reversing our position as a mono- product economy.”

The CBN governor equally spoke on the number of jobs created in the agriculture sector:

“In the agriculture sector, the Anchor Borrowers’ Programme (ABP) has ensured that Nigeria emerged from being a net importer of rice to becoming a major producer, supplying key markets in neighbouring countries. As at October 2018, a total number of 862,069 farmers cultivating about 835,239 hectares, across 16 different commodities, have so far benefited from Anchor Borrowers’ Programme, which has generated 2,502,675 jobs across the country.”

Describing the development as “heart-warming,” the president said it was just a matter of time before a significantly positive impact would be made in the statistics of the unemployed in the country, particularly from the agriculture sector.

He asserted: “We are on a productive voyage, which would see the ship of state berthing at the harbour of food self-sufficiency, gainful jobs, peace and prosperity for Nigerians.”

Advertisement

PT Mag Campaign AD

Support PREMIUM TIMES' journalism of integrity and credibility

Good journalism costs a lot of money. Yet only good journalism can ensure the possibility of a good society, an accountable democracy, and a transparent government.

For continued free access to the best investigative journalism in the country we ask you to consider making a modest support to this noble endeavour.

By contributing to PREMIUM TIMES, you are helping to sustain a journalism of relevance and ensuring it remains free and available to all.

Donate


NEVER MISS A THING AGAIN! Subscribe to our newsletter

* indicates required

DOWNLOAD THE PREMIUM TIMES MOBILE APP

Now available on

  Premium Times Android mobile applicationPremium Times iOS mobile applicationPremium Times blackberry mobile applicationPremium Times windows mobile application

TEXT AD: This space is available for a Text_Ad.. Call Willie on +2347088095401 for more information


All rights reserved. This material and any other material on this platform may not be reproduced, published, broadcast, written or distributed in full or in part, without written permission from PREMIUM TIMES.