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Oluwasina Phillip

The Federal Government has said that the Nigeria Agri-business and Agro -Industry Development Initiative (NAADI) would address enormous challenges faced by stakeholders in the agric-commodity value chain in the country.

The Minister of State for Industry, Trade and Investment, Amb. Mariam Yalwaji Katagum stated this in her keynote address during the official flag-off and commissioning of Bauchi State Office for the implementation of Nigeria Agribusiness and Agri- industry Development Initiative (NAADI) in Bauchi, Bauchi State.

“The Federal Ministry of Industry, Trade and Investment is aware of the enormous challenges faced by stakeholders in the agric-commodity value chain, and the objective of NAADI is to address these identified challenges facing the agribusiness and agro-industrial sub-sector of the Nigerian economy, such as high cost of production, low quality of products, and capacity utilization amongst others”, the Minister stated .

Amb. Katagum explained that the overall objective of NAADI is to develop an industrialized and commercialized agricultural sector, comprised of highly productive and profitable commodity value chains, with a view to accelerating the growth and diversification of the economy, into differentiated high-value products.

She said “The target groups include, small producer and marketing organizations, Small and Medium Agro-Industry and agribusiness enterprises, amongst others. It should be noted that this initiative has received the endorsement of all State Governments across the Federation, and the Ministry has so far, successfully commissioned four NAADI offices in Kano, Sokoto, Akwa-Ibom and Imo States and thanks to Almighty Allah for making it possible to be here today for the official commissioning of Bauchi office to kick start the implementation of the programme in the home of Tourism.

Distinguished stakeholders, we are particularly interested in this programme because of the accruable benefits, which include among others: stimulate the flows of equity investment to meet sectoral equity investments gap, particularly in sectors critical to driving the nation’s trade and exports competitiveness with propensity to improve the flow of foreign capital into Nigeria that has dropped by 60% in 2020 from US$24bn in 2019 to US$9.7bn; enhance the nation’s agribusiness performance; reduce the country’s dependence on imports of agro-industry products; support human capacity building of MSMEs, particularly youth and women operating in export supply chains and increase of value-added goods and services.

From the outset, I would like to express our sincere gratitude to His Excellency, Governor of Bauchi, Senator Bala Mohammad, Kauran Bauchi for accepting to key into this initiative and the excellent arrangements made for the establishment of the Office. This initiative is very strategic, towards implementing the Economic Diversification Agenda of this present Administration, an effort anchored on the Economic Recovery and Growth Plan (ERGP) and by extension the Economic Sustainability Plan (ESP). The plan also seeks to develop the non-oil sector to boost production, encourage value addition and export, for increased foreign exchange earnings, wealth and job creation”.

Amb. Katagum said the NAADI initiative, represents a paradigm shift for agro-industrial revolution in Nigeria, conceived within the context of the Nigeria industrial Revolution Plan (NIRP) of the Ministry and the design concept of NAADI is derived from a generic framework produced by UNIDO under the African Agribusiness and Agro-Industry Development Initiative AADI (3ADI), which was launched in March 2010 and formally adopted for domiciliation in Nigeria as NAADI.

“This initiative undoubtedly, will enhance manufacturing process to transform Agricultural Commodities from natural state to value-added state, leading to the production of Agro-industry products. The intention is to unlock the high premium latent value of agricultural commodities, for players in the Agribusiness and Agro-industrial sub-sector, for the overall satisfaction of consumers, so as to revamp the sub-sector.

Our major funding partners and collaborators in this process include: the World Bank, Afreximbank, NIRSAL, BOI, BOA, ITF, NEPC, CAC, SMEDAN, USAID, UNIDO and FACAN, as well as state actors in the commodity value chains respectively” the Minister stated.

She stated “The successful implementation of NAADI is premised on the commitment of state governments and other critical stakeholders in the State, therefore, given the antecedent of our Governor, His Excellency, Senator Bala A. Mohammed, Kauran Bauchi, I am optimistic that NAADI will be successfully implemented in Bauchi State.

However, the NAADI Bauchi State office comes with some responsibilities. The office is expected to coordinate the activities of stakeholders across the state, provide leadership and mobilize key players along the selected agri-commodity value chains for participation, with a view to ensuring that the initiative is successfully implemented for the overall benefits of the state and the country in general”.

The Minister said “Given the strategic position of Bauchi State in the national commodity map and its vibrant youth, my Ministry has identified Bauchi State as key partner in the ongoing implementation of NAADI as well as other key policies and programmes of the Ministry aimed at achieving Mr. President’s declaration of lifting 100 million Nigerian youth out of poverty within the next 10 years”.

Amb. Katagum reaffirmed that her Ministry was committed to creating an enabling environment, facilitating linkages between stakeholders and funding institutions in ensuring that the required framework for the sustainability of NAADI is provided.

She stated that “As we work to deliver on these key objectives, there is a dedicated NAADI secretariat with the mandate of ensuring proper monitoring and evaluation with a view to rewarding best performing States as a motivation for others” and she implored the people of Bauchi State to take advantage of the rare opportunity by embracing the programme.

The event had in attendance the Deputy Governor of Bauchi State, Senator Baba Tela; Special Advisers to the Governor; Bauchi State Local Government Chairmen; representatives of the Ministries, Departments and Agencies; members of the Organised Private Sector; representatives of Nigerian National Association of Small Scale Industries, United Nations Industrial Development Organisation, UNIDO, Chamber of Commerce and Industry; State Co-ordinator, NAADI among others.

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