About 3.8 million farmers have so far benefited from the Anchor Borrowers’ Programme (ABP), the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) has said.
The Director, Development Finance Department of the bank, Yila Yusuf, made this known in an interview with the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) on Friday in Abuja.
He also disclosed that the apex bank has stopped receiving cash from the beneficiaries, as repayment for their loans
According to him, the new repayment method will encourage more farmers to take charge of the opportunities inherent in the scheme.
He explained, “We rate every single commodity they produce and guarantee the prices. This will encourage more farmers to enroll in the programme.”
Yusuf further stated that N554.61 billion had been disbursed through the programme since its inception in 2015.
He stated that the programme, since its inception, has succeeded in creating more jobs and charting the country on its way to food security, particularly during the lockdown, occasioned by the COVID-19 pandemic.
“We have to commend President Buhari for putting the ABP in place. Over 3.8 million farmers have so far benefited from the programme.
“The multiplier effect on the economy is huge.
“The ABP has helped farmers improve their yields. For maize, we now do five metric tonnes per hectare and for rice, we’re improving from four metric tonnes to 10 metric tonnes per hectare.
“We will be trying out some Brazilian seeds that we will give to the anchors and their association,” he asserted.
The director also assured that the government, through the programme, would improve rice and maize cultivation practices, thereby stabilising the market prices.
He said, “We realised that the prices of maize are continuously increasing.
“What we have done is to guarantee all the output from the anchor and put it into the strategic programme and release to the millers.
“This is to warn those hoarding the produce that the prices will crash and they will lose”.
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