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Adesina promises agricultural growth in Africa

Bizwatch - September 8, 2015

Eighth President of the African Development Bank (AfDB), Dr. Akinwumi Adesina, has disclosed that during his adminsitration, agriculture will remain a key priority of the AfDB.
While speaking at his inaugural speech in Abidjan, Cote d’Ivoire, Adesina said that the agricultural sector, if well managed, will be the largest employer of labour in the continent and will eliminate poverty. He said his administration would continue to partner with international agencies that are ready to develop African agric sector. Adesina, who stated this at his inaugural speech in Abidjan, Cote d’Ivoire, pointed out that agriculture can eliminate poverty out of the continent.
He said that Africa is blessed with potentials in rich resources, adding that unlocking of Africa’s wealth will go a long way to resolve the continent’s challenges.
Adesina, who was expected to unveil his economic blueprint for Africa, said that he would work tirelessly to ensure that agriculture is given priority by African countries.
“Despite myriad of challenges bedeviling Africa as a continent in terms of energy, infrastructure, unemployment among others, poverty should not be comparative advantage of Africa”
He added that that rural economies’ revival and agricultural development would be greatly considered as major thrust of the African Development Bank (AfDB).  He noted that during his time as Nigeria’s Minister of Agriculture, the country witnessed various reforms in the agric sector, under the Agricultural Transformation Agenda (ATA).
Adesina revelaed that Nigeria generated about $6 billion from various segments of Agric sector in the past three years under the ATA scheme, linking it to government aggressiveness to revive the agric sector in the country.
He said the agric sector attracted both foreign and indigenous investment in the areas of agricultural input production, primary agricultural production, agricultural processing and agricultural storage activities.
He said the various segments of the sector, which had received sizeable fund from the ATA scheme include over $500 million investment in the fertilizer sector, a scale-up from $10 million to $53 million investment in the seed production industry in the space of three years, an increased evaluation of the poultry sector by $55 million, over $1 billion investment in the oil palm sector and almost $3 billion in the rice sector.


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