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Tuesday 04th August 2020,
Hope for Nigeria

Nigeria’s Staple Crop Zones to Gulp $1.063bn – UNIDO

The United Nations Industrial Development Organisation (UNIDO) has estimated that the first phase of the Staple Crop Processing Zones (SCPZs), a project of the Federal Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Development (FMARD) located in six states of the federation will gulp $1,063.1 billion.
UNIDO, a co-sponsor of the project, through its representatives, Dr. Chukwuma Ezedinma, declared this yesterday in Abuja, while unveiling SCPZs master plan at a one-day stakeholders’ workshop on effective implementation of the project.
Ezedinma stated that the funds would cover specialised and support facilities, including external infrastructure, such as road connectivity, highway strengthening, rail connectivity, air and seaport connectivity, power linkages and external water supply linkages.
“The six staple crop processing zones which will be established in Kogi, Kano, Rivers, Niger, Enugu and Anambra is estimated to cost $1,063.1 billion. The breakdown is as follows: Niger ($181.4 million); Kano ( $151.1 million); Anambra ($186.6 million); Rivers ($79.6 million); Kogi ($314.7 million); and Enugu ($149.7 million),” he said.

Speaking at the workshop, the Permanent Secretary, FMARD, Mrs. Ibukun Odusote explained that the ministry would establish synergy with relevant ministries and agencies of the government, as well as the private sector to address challenges arising from the establishments of the SCPZs.

Odusote who was represented by the Director, Office of the Permanent Secretary, Mr. Chudi Nwaudu said the development and implementation of the SCPZs cuts across ministries. This according to her culminates the coming together of all relevant Ministries, Departments and Agencies and the private sector.
She added that an inter-ministerial committee would be set-up by the federal government to drive the project home.
The Permanent Secretary also said private sector investors have been secured for the Alape, Badeggi and the Bunkure  zones and they are Cargill USA, Nigeria Flour Mills, and Dangote group respectively.
“Let me inform you that six out of the 14 SCPZs had been selected for development under the first phase. These are Bunkure in (Kano state), for Rice, Tomato and Sorghum, Agbadu-Alape (Kogi state) for cassava, Badeggi (Niger state) for Rice, Ketu (Lagos state) for aquaculture, Omor (Anambra state)/Adani (Enugu state) for rice, and Okorolo (Rivers state) for fisheries and aquaculture,” she said.

These sites are designed to be multi-crop processing zones, located near high agricultural production areas with cluster of agro-processing activities,” she said.
According to her, the workshop was necessary after completion of the master plan, and the Environmental Impact Assessment (EIA), so as to proceed to the implementation stage.
She explained that the workshop was organised to discuss in details, possible areas of intervention and support on the infrastructural needs as well as deliberate national policies on the SCPZs for effective implementation.

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