Agriculture is the mainstay of Nigeria’s rural economy. However, the sector still faces myriad challenges. The sector struggles with a lack of proper legislation and weak enabling environment for agribusiness, limited access to appropriate financing options, poor commodity value chain networks, climate change and the environmental consequences of industrial activities.
Particularly in the oil-rich Niger Delta, these obstacles have persisted even in the wake of decades of government and donor-funded agricultural development initiatives.
To provide a sustainable solution to these persistent challenges and diversify the economy away from its reliance on extractive industry, the Feed the Future Nigeria Agribusiness Investment Activity, together with the Nigeria Agricultural Policy Project, supported the Delta State government to develop this new Agricultural Policy.
On January 29, 2021, the State Executive Council approved the Delta State Agricultural Policy. The new Policy will support agricultural productivity and improve agribusiness performance. It will also raise enterprise value of the agricultural sector by developing commodity value chains, improving access to quality inputs, finance and investments, storage facilities, and new markets.
The activity provided technical support to the state government all through the entire process of policy design, convened inclusive stakeholder engagements, and facilitated its approval by SEC through the Delta State Ministry of Agriculture and Natural Resources.
“With the approval of this policy, we believe that Delta State has now moved a step closer to its food quality, safety and security goals,” said Dominic Graham, Chief of Party Feed the Future Nigeria Agribusiness Investment activity. “The state government has also created a platform on which to build mutual understanding and trust between agribusinesses, financial institutions, and government entities.”
USAID will continue to support government, small and medium sized enterprises, producer groups, aggregators, processors, and other service providers in the focal agribusiness value chains as they operate in a more conducive regulatory, finance, and investment climate. The Agribusiness Investment Activity is implemented by Cultivating New Frontiers in Agriculture (CNFA).