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cassavaNigeria has secured a deal to supply to China, 2.2 million metric tonnes of Cassava Chips. The deal, worth, $272 million, adds to the growing earnings of the Ministry of Agriculture, and more opportunities within the sector, that farmers, investors and state governments can benefit from. The Minister of Agriculture and Rural Development, Akinwunmi Adesina, made the deal known and spoke further on the plans of the ministry. He said, “For the first time we are exporting dry cassava chips to China in two separate contracts of 1.1 million metric tonnes, each worth $136 million.” He also expressed the plans of the ministry, submitting that, “My interest as a minister of agriculture is to protect Nigerian farmers and provide them with markets to sell their commodities. We are rapidly modernising the agricultural sector to ensure that we match our production rating with our processing rating.” “Biometric information data on farmers was developed by my ministry capturing 4.2 million farmers across Nigeria and the list will continue to be updated yearly. The fastest way to reach farmers today remains the mobile phones because we have to make use of modern techniques if we are serious about modernising farming in Nigeria.” He continued, “We have designed a programme called the Youth Employment in Agriculture Programme with the objective of developing young entrepreneurial commercial farmers that will make Nigerian agricultural sector competitive today and beyond. In collaboration with other ministries such as power, transport, communication and others government through the staple food processing zone will concentrate on developing infrastructure in the areas of high food production.”

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This article was first published on 22nd January 2013

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