NIRSAL, Others To Reduce N2.7tn Farmers’ Post-Harvest Losses
The Nigeria Incentive-Based Risk Sharing System for Agricultural Lending and other major stakeholders in the agriculture sector are working on a framework that will tackle the bottlenecks in the national haulage system for agricultural products.
The model, known as the Secured Agricultural Commodity Transport Corridor, is an innovative system for fixing the key challenges facing the transportation of agricultural produce across the country.
The model is currently undergoing a comprehensive review by major stakeholders who will implement the framework when it is eventually approved by the Federal Government.
Some of the agencies reviewing the model are the ministries of Agriculture and Rural Development; Industry, Trade and Investment as well as Transportation.
Others are the Nigerian Export Promotion Council, Nigerian Investment Promotion Council, Joint Tax Board, Federal Inland Revenue Service, National Union of Road Transport Workers, Nigerian Governors’ Forum and the Association of Local Governments of Nigeria.
Speaking at a workshop on the framework on Wednesday in Abuja, the Managing Director, NIRSAL, Mr Aliyu Abdulhameed, said the SAT-C model would assist in addressing the bottlenecks in the movement of agricultural produce.
This, he noted, would consequently reduce wastage resulting from late evacuation of perishable produce from the farms.
He said when effectively implemented, the framework would stem the tide of post-harvest losses, which the Nigerian Stored Products Research Institute estimated to be $8.9bn (N2.7tn) annually.
The NIRSAL MD explained that the implementation of the model was envisaged to reduce the prices of food commodities, enhance food security and increase the contribution of the agriculture sector to Nigeria’s Gross Domestic Product.
He called on participants to take ownership of the model and make vibrant contributions to the realisation of a secured haulage system for Nigeria.
Abdulhameed stated that the joint framework to be arrived at would promote a model that would manage the interests of all stakeholders, while the Federal Government would work on developing the necessary alternative transport infrastructure that would enhance seamless movement of produce around the country.
He pledged NIRSAL’s technical and financial support for the session, noting that Nigeria’s estimated population of 200 million people provided a captive market for agricultural products in the country.
The Director, Agricultural Business Processing, Marketing and Investment, Federal Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Development, Alhaji Musibau Azeez, said the government would support the model with the right policies that would enable the emergence and operation of private sector haulage businesses.