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FG secures 134m dollar loan from AfDB to boost wheat production

The Federal Government has obtained a 134-million-dollar loan from the Africa Development Bank to boost wheat production.

Minister of Agriculture and Rural Development, Dr Muhammad Mahmoud, said this in Abuja, while briefing State House correspondents on the implementation of the presidential mandate given to the ministry.

He explained that the aim was to save the country from acute scarcity of wheat, whose demand and price had gone high because of the Russia-Ukraine war.

The minister noted that with 250,000 farmers cultivating 250,000 hectares in the 2022 dry season, the initiative would raise wheat production to 750,000 metric tonnes.

The wheat, he said, would be cultivated in Jigawa, Kebbi, Kano, Bauchi, Katsina, Kaduna, Sokoto, Zamfara, Gombe, Plateau, Borno, and Yobe, Adamawa, and Taraba states.

The minister said the Federal Government had deployed 5,000 agro rangers drawn from the Nigeria Civil Defence Corps to protect farmers facing security challenges.

He said about 3.6 million indirect jobs had been created from the 2.4 billion dollars’ worth of externally-funded projects being implemented by the Buhari administration.

He said 538 million dollars was approved for special agricultural processing zones to support inclusive and sustainable agricultural development in Nigeria.

According to him, another project worth 575 million dollars is being implemented to improve rural access and agricultural marketing in participating states.

He added that government was also strengthening the financing institutional base for effective development, maintenance and management of rural roads network.

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