FG Targets 2,000 Tractors Yearly To Boost Food Production
The Federal Government said it is targeting the production of 2,000 tractors in-country yearly to boost food production, create jobs for Nigerian farmers, especially women and youth as well as achieve food and nutrition security in the country.
Sen. Abubakar Kyari, Minister of Agriculture and Food Security, stated this on Friday in Abuja, while receiving in the audience a delegation from John Deere led by its Vice President, Jason Braintley, on a courtesy visit to his office.
Kyari noted that the visit was a follow-up to the meeting between Nigeria’s Vice President, Ibrahim Shettima, and top officials of John Deere at the recent World Food Prize Foundation held in Lowa, USA.
He said that, when produced, the government would not off-take the tractors but provide the enabling environment to make the tractors affordable at low-interest rates to Nigerian farmers to boost all-year-round farming.
Kyari pointed out there was a need for farmers to form clusters or co-operatives to ensure that they have access to mechanization and pay instalmentally within a few years.
In his remarks, Minister of State, Agriculture and Food Security, Sen. Aliyu Abdullahi, stressed the need to evaluate existing co-operatives and ascertain those that require support to enable them to access the tractors when available.
He also emphasized the importance of identifying crops most suitable for mechanization.
The Vice President of John Deere, Jason Braintley, said the company was exploring the feasibility of hiring, acquisition, and production, in addition to after-sales services, supply of genuine spare parts and training of operators and mechanics.
He said the capacity of the tractors would range between 75 and 90 horsepower for use in different terrains in the country.