The Nigeria Incentive-Based Risk Sharing for Agriculture Lending this week said it was putting in place strategies that would make the agricultural value chain more attractive to finance.
The Managing Director, NIRSAL, Mr. Aliyu Abdulhameed, said this in Abuja at a training programme organised by the International Labour Organisation.
The programme had participants from the Central Bank of Nigeria, the Federal Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Development and NIRSAL.
NIRSAL is a risk-sharing system created by the CBN with a mandate to enhance the flow of affordable finance and investments into fixed agricultural value chains.
Abdulhameed stated that NIRSAL would continue to de-risk the agriculture value chain so that banks could lend to the agriculture sector with confidence.
He said NIRSAL would also provide technical assistance that would help banks to lend sustainably to agriculture.
This, he noted, would enable producers to borrow and use loans more effectively to increase output of better quality agricultural products.
He stated, “This training provides you with an opportunity not only to upgrade your skills, but also an opportunity to contribute to the transformation of the economy and also to positively impact the lives of the poorest, who are mostly the smallholder farmers.
“The value chain approach, which you have learned, is particularly advantageous for smallholder farmers in Nigeria, because it identifies how inputs and services are brought together to produce a product, and how value is added as it moves along the chain.
“Adopting a value chain approach for agriculture guarantees inclusive markets for agricultural value chain players and makes each segment more attractive to finance.”
Also speaking, the Country Director for Nigeria, ILO, Mr. Dennis Zulu, said the agency was delighted to partner NIRSAL in the agricultural value chain.
According to him, through the partnership, the ILO will bring global experience to assist in building the capacity of NIRSAL to deliver on its mandate.