By William Ukpe 

The Federal Government has announced plans to develop 142 agro-processing centres across the six geopolitical zones in the country.

The projects will be funded by the “Green Imperative” programme a $1.2 billion joint Nigerian-Brazilian agriculture development scheme.

The Minister of Information, Lai Mohammed and the Minister of Agriculture, Saba Nanono announced the implementation of the scheme.

Mohammed said, “The $1.2 billion programme is to be implemented over a period of 5-10 years with finding from the Development Bank of Brazil (BNDES) and Deutsche Bank with Insurance provided by Brazilian Guarantees, Funds Management Agency (FMA), Islamic Corporation for Insurance of Export Credit (ICIIEC) of the Islamic Development Bank (ISDB) and coordinated by the Getulio Vargas Foundation.”

The agro-processing centres will manufacture all equipment required for processing, drying, packaging, storage and marketing of agro commodities, as the government aims to revolutionise the agricultural sector.

“The Programme will create 5 million jobs and inject over $10 billion into the economy within 10 years and impact 35 million persons nutritionally and economically,” the Minister added.

The Green Imperative programme was launched by Vice President, Yemi Osinbajo in 2018 and influenced by the More Food International Programme of the Brazilian Government to maximize productivity of smallholder farms with the provisions of tractors.

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