The Kaduna State Government says it is working toward including ginger and maize as part of its export products 2020.
The Permanent Secretary, state Ministry of Agriculture, Alhaji Sabiu Sani disclosed this while defending the ministry’s 2020 budget before the House Committee on Agriculture at the state Assembly on Thursday.
He said the vision of the ministry was in line with that of the Federal Government, to improve agricultural productivity, create employment, reduce poverty, improve nutrition and ultimately create a harmonious progressive society.
“Going by the closure of borders by the federal government in which there is no longer allocation of funds for the importation of food, the ministry is now looking at other areas to improve farm production.
“We are also looking at ways to generate more income to the state coffers.
“Kaduna state is one of the major producers of ginger and maize, by the time we add that as one of our export products, that would be a plus to our farmers.
“We are beginning to see the impact of our activities as it relates to other competitors locally and internationally,’’ Sani said.
He said that the state government is doing all things possible to support farmers in the state by helping them to improve their productivity and increase the quality of their produce.
“The government will help the farmers to develop new aliases that will facilitate access to credit, new technologies and access to new markets.
“We also plan to help the farmers by improving their relationship with organisations and companies and entrepreneurs that are interested in agriculture and value addition within the state,” Sani said.
The permanent secretary said part of the ministry’s activities focuses on both livestock and crop production and attracting investments in collaboration with relevant government agencies.
Sani said the budget components on the capital side, intends to facilitate anchor borrowers programme with N1.5 billion and hope to attract other financing support that would double or triple the amount.
He said the agricultural budget is wide, adding that “the ministry has provisions of N80 million as counterpart funds that can attract another investment of N3 billion or more in 2020.
In his remark, the Chairman House Committee on Agriculture, Alhaji Hassan Abdukadir said the committee was satisfied with the improvements in the ministry.
According to him, the assembly is working to ensure that all the plans of the state are realised.