Nigerias Annual 10Bn Expenditure On Agricultural Imports Highlighted

Nigeria’s Annual $10bn Expenditure on Agricultural Imports Highlighted

Ken Aghoghovbia, the Deputy Managing Director of the African Reinsurance Corporation, has revealed that Nigeria spends approximately $10 billion annually on imports to address its food and agricultural production deficits. This revelation was made during the Africa Reinsurance Corporation Agriculture Workshop in Lagos.

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The workshop, spanning two days, was organised in collaboration with the International Finance Corporation Technical assistance provider for the Nigeria Climate Insurance project. It aimed to create a platform for dialogue among significant stakeholders in Nigeria’s agricultural insurance sector, including insurers, government agencies, farmers, the insurance regulator, financial institutions, and commercial farms.

Aghoghovbia, in his address, highlighted the challenges facing the agricultural sector, such as flooding, desertification, conflicts between herdsmen and farmers, limited access to financing, and the low adoption of modern technology. These issues have hindered the sector’s growth, leading to a significant gap between local food supply and demand, thereby necessitating increased food imports.

He emphasised the potential of agricultural insurance in transforming Nigeria’s agricultural sector, stating:

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“In the past five years, agricultural insurance has garnered significant attention in Nigeria due to the need to modernise agricultural production and the government’s efforts to diversify the economy. With around 70 million hectares of agricultural land, Nigeria’s agricultural insurance market could generate over $600 million in premiums.”

Editorial:
The revelation that Nigeria spends a staggering $10 billion annually on agricultural imports underscores a pressing need for introspection and strategic planning. While the country boasts vast arable land and a rich agricultural heritage, the sector remains plagued by myriad challenges, from environmental to socio-economic.

A multi-pronged approach is required to revitalise the agricultural sector. Investments in infrastructure, research, and technology can pave the way for modernised farming practices, leading to increased yields and reduced dependency on imports. The promotion of agricultural insurance can provide a safety net for farmers, encouraging more individuals to venture into the sector.

However, it’s not just about increasing production. Efforts must also be directed towards improving post-harvest management, storage, and processing to reduce wastage and add value to agricultural produce. By addressing these challenges holistically, Nigeria can not only achieve self-sufficiency in food production but also position itself as a major agricultural exporter, boosting the economy and creating employment opportunities.

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Did You Know?

  • Nigeria has a rich agricultural history, with farming being the primary occupation for many communities.
  • The country has diverse agro-ecological zones, allowing for the cultivation of a wide range of crops.
  • Nigeria was once a leading exporter of groundnuts, cocoa, and palm oil in the 1960s.
  • The agricultural sector employs over 30% of Nigeria’s population.
  • Despite its potential, post-harvest losses in Nigeria are estimated to be worth billions of dollars annually.

Author

  • Nissi Nwaozuzu

    Nissi Nwaozuzu is a woman with many talents. She loves writing, reading, knitting, sewing, and drawing. She also plays the guitar and sings beautifully. Mixed martial arts are one of her passions as well! Email: nissi.nwaozuzu@yohaig.ng

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