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AfDB, Ogun, others to partner on processing zones

By Guardian Nigeria
28 January 2022   |   2:41 am
The Ogun State government is working towards signing a Memorandum of Understanding with the African Development Bank (AFDB) on the establishment of the Special Agro-Industrial Processing Zone Programme.

Dapo Abiodun. Photo/FACEBOOK/dabiodunMFR

The Ogun State government is working towards signing a Memorandum of Understanding with the African Development Bank (AFDB) on the establishment of the Special Agro-Industrial Processing Zone Programme.

The SAPZ will be located at the Gateway Agro-Cargo Airport, Ilishan-Remo in Ikenne council of the state.

The meeting, which held a place at the AfDB Secretariat in Abidjan, had in attendance Governors Dapo Abiodun, Nasir el-Rufai, Seyi Makinde and Hope Uzodinma. Their states – Ogun, Kaduna, Oyo and Imo – have been listed to benefit from the first round of funding under the same scheme.

Speaking at the event, Abiodun, lauded the AFDB for choosing Ogun as a major location of the SAPZ, saying the programme aligns well with the Economic and Agricultural Development Agenda and activities of Ogun.

He noted that implementation of SAPZ would not only support smallholder farmers and other value chain actors for increased agricultural productivity, it would also enhance food security and nutrition security activities.

He said further that the programme would ensure job creation through agricultural value chain development in the crop, aquaculture, core livestock sectors as well as service provision initiatives in the agricultural sector.

“Small and Medium Scale Enterprises (SMEs) development /agro industrialisation through innovative linkages of primary producers to the industrial process, export promotion/diversification and leveraging on local, national, regional and international trade advantages including African Continental Free Trade Area (AfCFTA) will also receive a boom via this programme,” Abiodun said.

The governor explained that Ogun, with its comparative advantages of arable land of 1.2 million hectares, cargo airport project, transport master plan and road infrastructure/network targeting food production and processing locations and proposed Agro-Industrial Hub, the SAPZ programme would be a huge success.

“With our Agricultural Transformation Centres and Aggregation Centres, proximity to Lagos market, close proximity to raw materials, expanded primary production and youth engagement in key SAPZ crop, Ogun is good to go.”