As Nigeria prepares to host the World Economic Forum on Africa, experts have asked for the showcasing of small and medium scale processing as an investment area in the agricultural sector if jobs must be created.
Africa they say holds about 60 per cent of global uncultivated land. Investing in profitable, high growth and sustainable agri-business particularly in Nigeria is seen as a way to drive youth employment.
Two agricultural experts, an Agricultural Economist at the University of Agriculture, Abeokuta, Ogun State, Prof. Bola Okuneye, and an Agric Information Broker, Mr. Africanfarmer Mogaji, maintained that getting the youths interested in agriculture can be achieved by showing them how to make money from the sector.
They were both speaking on Channels Television’s business programme, Business Morning.
They both believe that organising youth programmes and providing social facilities can drive the interest of the youths to agriculture.
They advocated the need for government to leverage on the media to show what can be done practically in the agricultural sector.
According to them, to grow productive jobs in the agricultural sector the youths need to be encouraged by providing lands to plant arable crops, adding that they need to be provided with funds and opportunity to practice mechanized farming.
Agriculture is a major contributor to the national gross domestic product, and research has shown that Nigeria has over 80 million hectares of arable land.
This accounts for about 23% of arable land across all of West Africa, so in terms of production, the potential for West Africa to leap forward is immense as the region possesses not only land, but the lowest levels of irrigation in the world.
Source: Channels TV