CBN To Fund One Million Hectare Rice Farming
Governor of the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN), Mr. Godwin Emefiele, has said the CBN was targeting to fund farmers to cultivate at least one million hectares of farms in the 2020 dry season farming in the Anchor Borrowers Programme (ABP).
Speaking yesterday in Minna during the flag-off of the 2020 input distribution to rice farmers and loan recovery drive, Emefiele said the bank was targeting at least 5 million metric tonnes of rice paddy in the 2020 dry season farming.
The input distribution is under the Rice Farmers Association of Nigeria (RIFAN) -CBN ABP.
Represented by the CBN Deputy Governor, Corporate Services, Mr. Edward Adamu, the Governor said the partnership with Rice Farmers Association of Nigeria (RIFAN) under the Commodity Association Window of the ABP was a flag-ship programme to explore the potentials inherent in Agricultural Commodity Associations and position them strategically as drivers of enhanced agricultural productivity in Nigeria.
“From a modest pilot of 75,000 farmers in 26 states, the RIFAN-CBN ABP has now been fully established in all States of the Federation and the FCT,” he said.
He said the 2018 wet season witnessed a geometric rise in beneficiaries, as about 275,000 farmers were empowered to cultivate 220,000 hectares.
He said the target hectarage for 2019 was 500,000 and we hope to achieve one million hectares by 2020 dry season” he examined.
Emefiele said that beyond rice, the Commodity Association Window has been expanded to cover more commodities like maize, cassava, sorghum, soy bean, ginger and many more.
Speaking at the event with saw the unveiling of four rice pyramids, the Niger state governor, Alhaji Abubakar Sani Bello, said the state is capable of producing 2m metric tons of rice out of the 7m metric tons required in Nigeria annually.
He said the state has almost 9 million hectares of land but at the moment we are cultivating only 300,000 hectares of land. With the pyramid display, it is a significant improvement and increase in our production level,” Bello said.