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OPS should support government in funding Research & Development — FIIRO

Vanguard - October 10, 2014

 

The Federal Institute of Industrial Research, Oshodi (FIIRO) has called on the Organized Private Sector (OPS) to support the Federal Government in financing Research and Development (R&D) activities in the country.
The Director General/Chief Executive Officer, FIIRO, Gloria Elemo, made the call in Lagos when she addressed the dialogue session organized by the Nigerian Association of Chambers of Commerce, Industry, Mines and Agriculture (NACCIMA) on “Enhancing Agricultural Export Through Adequate Financing.’
The Director General said that it is strongly recommended that R&D activities, even from farm to fork, should be adequately financed in order to make our agro-commodities more competitive on the global market and urgent private sector initiative and intervention is required to complement Government efforts.
She noted that the infrastructural facilities available to FIIRO are too obsolete to churn out meaningful R&D results that would be globally competitive, due to inadequate funding.
Nevertheless, she added that FIIRO within the limits of its slim budget has been able to add value to agricultural raw materials to enhance export, as over 250 commercialisable technologies have been developed, 50 have been commercialized and transferred directly to only about 5,000 investors, 25 of these are on regular technology transfer trainings and 200 of these are currently on the shelf awaiting commercialization.
According to her, major challenges in relation to financing are inadequate financing of R&D activities in the country, inadequate funding of commercialization of research results, hence the low drive and lack of funds to finance awareness creation and publicity/promotion of R&D results to end users.
The President of NACCIMA, Alhaji Badaru Abubakar, said, over the years, agriculture has proven to be one viable sector more than capable of contributing 75 per cent to the GDP of our nation as against the current giving of 24 per cent in a country so dependent on oil like Nigeria and that there are innumerable amount of value chain in the stream of agriculture, from cultivation to the final consumer.
“Agricultural value chain is an important option for agricultural development because higher financial returns can be realized through value enhancing inputs. It also contributes to the improvement in the effectiveness and efficiency of agricultural values.
It is a known fact that the value chain concept creates opportunities for farmers, agribusiness and entrepreneurs along agricultural value chain to transform commodities into higher value products- a process that can play an important role in poverty reduction; creation of employment, provision of raw materials for industrial growth and generate income” he said.

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