Auchi, Nigeria. August 29th. Nigeria’s Vice President, Professor Yemi Osinbajo today inaugurated a 60,000 metric tonnes-capacity fertilizer plant in Auchi, Edo State. According to Yemi Osinbajo, “The clear objective of establishing this plant is to boost farming activities and the agriculture value chain Nationwide, this investment, is a direct response to the Federal Government’s strategy of growing the Nigerian Economy on a zero oil economy.”
He said the fertilizer blending plant will go a long way to boost agricultural productivity in the state and indeed the entire southern region of the country. He said the importance of access to input by farmers cannot be over emphasized as it helps maximize the impact of Agriculture in the society.
“On the average, a Nigerian farmer uses 13kg per hectare of fertilizer compared with world average of 100kg per hectare. This explains why Mr. President negotiated the December 2016 Fertilizer initiative, working with the Moroccan King, aimed at achieving local production of 1 million metric tons of NPK fertilizer for 2017 wet season farming. Reducing costs and delivering finished products at N5000-5500 per bag (formerly between N8-9,000 sometimes N13,000,” he said.
“This is an enterprise that will create at least five hundred direct jobs and several more indirect jobs here in Auchi, it will bring us closer to self sufficiency in fertilizer production and most importantly boost food production and reduce food prices thereby ultimately enhancing food security in Nigeria,” he added.
Prof. Osinbajo commended the Edo state Government for supporting President Muhammadu Buhari’s job creation and food security initiative.
On his part, the Edo state Governor Mr. Godwin Obaseki said his government decided to key into this administration’s Fertilizer plan – “The Presidential Fertilizer initiative” by reviving the Edo Fertilizer Plant thereby contributing their quarter towards attaining self sufficiency in food production.
The Edo fertilizer blending plant is a partnership between the state government and Wacot Agro-Allied Company and it is part of the Presidential Fertilizer Initiative aimed at easing farmer’s access to fertilizer and boosting Agriculture productivity.
This fertilizer blending company will bring the total number of fertilizer blending plants in Nigeria to twelve.inaugurate a 60,000 metric tonnes-capacity fertilizer plant in Auchi
The Presidential Fertilizer Initiative
The stated goal of the Presidential Fertilizer Initiative (PFI) is to achieve the local production of one million metric tonnes of blended Nitrogen, Phosphorous and Potassium (NPK) Fertiliser for the 2017 wet season farming, and an additional 500,000 metric tonnes for dry season farming.
Prior to 2017, most of Nigeria’s stock of blended NPK Fertiliser was shipped into the country as fully-finished products, even though Urea and Limestone, which constitute roughly two-thirds of the component of each bag, are available locally. To make the imported Fertiliser available to farmers at reasonable prices, a subsidy scheme was birthed, and which cost tens of billions of naira annually.
The Presidential Fertilizer Initiative has been effective in securing a supply of quality Fertilisers by bringing in raw materials required for the production of the item in line with the crops and soils adaptable to Nigeria, stimulating local production of NPK Fertiliser by resuscitating moribund Fertiliser plants, and reviving the local blending Fertiliser industry, making Fertiliser available to Nigerian farmers at affordable prices and in time for the 2017 wet and dry season farming, enhancing food security as a result of the expected increase in food production, reducing food-induced inflation and stimulation of economic activities across the agriculture value chain.
Photo: Osinbajo commissions Edo fertilizer blending plant
The PFI has also been instrumental in creating thousands of direct and indirect jobs — so far a minimum of 1,100 factory jobs; and 2,600 transport jobs (truck drivers and drivers’ assistants), strengthening capacity to ensure a timely supply of quality Fertilisers in adequate quantities and in a cost–effective manner to rural areas as well as an efficient supply chain and improvement of logistics management, including warehousing and transportation services; and strengthening the agricultural extension services system and stimulating product innovation and development through the deployment of the Moroccan expertise in producing scientifically recommended formulae adaptable to the needs of the Nigerian soil.