FG secures N3.38billion AfDB loan for potatoes production | Nigeria Newspaper- Nigeria News| Naija News

26.7.17

FG secures N3.38billion AfDB loan for potatoes production

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FG secures N3.38bn AfDB loan for potatoes production
Minister of Finance, Mrs Kemi Adeosun
This was disclose by the Minister of Finance, Kemi Adeosun, while briefing State House correspondents on the outcome of the Federal Executive Council (FEC) meeting presided over by Acting President Yemi Osinbajo in Abuja on Wednesday.
She said the loan has 25 years repayment plan with a moratorium of five years at the rate of one percent.
Adeosun added that the loan would be used to develop the Irish potatoes value chain in the 17 local local government areas of the state.
According to her, the implementation would be jointly executed by FADAMA project and a unit in the state ministry of agriculture with about 70 percent of the loan going for the provision of infrastructure, extension services, improved planting and marketing.
She assured that the implementation would help to boost production and minimize wastage.
She said: “My approval was on behalf of Plateau State to support the potato value chain. There is a loan that we had previously cancelled from AfDB. So, it is not a new loan. We cancelled it and redirected the money to request on behalf of Plateau State Government to support the potato value chain.
“The rationale is that Plateau actually accounts for 95 per cent of Nigeria’s potato production and from Plateau, potatoes are actually exported to Ghana, Niger, Chad and other countries and despite that, there are huge profit losses because there is no enough storage and there is so much more we can do with Plateau’s potatoes.
“So, AfDB has come up with a comprehensive programme that will affect over 100,000 families. It is expected to create 60,000 jobs in a potato value chain, from processing, storage, replacement of current inputs and indeed, export.
“Now, the terms of the loan is one per cent per annum interest rate and it has 25 years moratorium. Plateau State will provide counterpart funding and the balance will be borrowed. It will affect 17 local government areas and we expect it to make significant job creation.
“The amount of the loan is N3.38 billion equivalent and Plateau State ought to contribute N595 million as their own counterpart funding.
“We have put a process in place to ensure adequate monitoring. This is really an important economic development for the nation and for Plateau State in particular.
“We have real advantage in potato production. We are really going to invest the money on roads. In some cases, the money will be used for roads to enable the products to come out. Sometimes, it is for storage. Sometimes, it is transportation. Sometimes, it is access to seedlings.”
Also speaking, Minister of Power, Works and Housing, Babatunde Fashola said, FEC approved and ratified works to be done on the Apapa Wharf road at the cost of N4.131 billion.
He revealed that the two memos his ministry brought to council were ratification of road works that had to be done under emergency circumstances.
He said: “The first was the Abuja- Kaduna highway. Recall we had to immediately do palliative works in order to support the closure of the Abuja airport runway which necessitated diversion of traffic to Kaduna.
“At that time, we didn’t have FEC’s approval, we only had anticipatory Presidential approval as prescribed under the law for emergencies works.
“The second one was with respect to the Apapa Wharf road. Recall that there was a recent presidential order for a 24hour, and that put pressure on an already detoriating road.
“I also went to handover that road sometime in June under the public private partnership structure between Julius Berger, Flour Mills, NPA and the ministry of Power, Works and Housing.
“To start construction on that first phase of the road. Council approved and ratified works that we had conducted on Abuja-Kaduna highway and also terms and conditions upon which we handed over the Apapa road.
“The project is at the cost of N1.58 billion for the 165 km Abuja Kaduna stretch where we did mainly patching of potholes to make the roads motor-able during the closure of the Abuja airport. The Apapa project is N4.131billion.”

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