Chinese Government Training Nigerians on Agricultural Techniques to enhance Productivity and Minimize Loses.
Agriculture in Nigeria has greatly improved in the past few years because of the advent of technology and other necessary infrastructures and most especially the recent economy recession have made a lot of people to be looking towards it. Although Nigeria depends heavily on the oil industry for its budgetary revenue, it is believed that if the agricultural sector is properly managed and enhanced, it would greatly boost the country’s gross domestic product and even replace oil on the top of the list, considering the vast area of land that is unused in Nigeria.
As we shift our attention toward agriculture there is the need to train experts in the modern agro technology. Thanks to the Chinese government for providing a specialized training for Nigerians in this regards. The Chinese government has commenced training of 100 Nigerian officials on agricultural techniques to enhance productivity and minimize loses.
The trainees were drawn from Federal and State Ministries, department and agencies and Nigerian agribusinesses. The 21-day training was jointly organized by Shandong Foreign Trade Vocational College, China and CGCOC Agricultural Development Co. Ltd in Abuja.
The training of this nature will not just impact knowledge but will form a basis for collaboration and networking for participants and by extension Nigeria and China, and a result we would fulfill the aims of the Belt and Road Initiative, especially now that the Belt and Road Initiative in an integral aspect to the China-Africa Cooperation.
The next Forum on China-Africa Cooperation summit, set for September in Beijing, is expected to add strong impetus to Sino-African cooperation. His Excellency Zhou Yuxiao, China’s Ambassador for FOCAC affairs, said the summit will feature two strong engines – FOCAC and the Belt and Road Initiative – with the outcomes expected to strengthen the relationship between China and Africa.
During the Belt and Road Forum last year May in Beijing, the Chinese Ministry of Agriculture, the National Development and Reform Commission, the Ministry of Commerce and the Ministry of Foreign Affairs all initiated a vision and action plan on promoting Agricultural Cooperation on the Belt and Road. This shows how important the issue of agriculture is to the present global agenda. The objective is to fulfill the needs and aspirations of most of the countries along the Belt and Road for solving the problems of famine and poverty, as well as for achieving food and nutrition security.
The Chinese government has proposed Agreements to seek closer cooperation in agricultural trade and investment between the major economic corridors to be driven by exchanges in agricultural science and technology. By so doing , China will actively partake in the development of regional agricultural cooperation platforms, increase agricultural investment in least developed countries, facilitate the implementation of 10 cooperation plans between China and Africa, mobilize the “South-South Cooperation Assistance Fund,” promote the South-South
Cooperation in agriculture, support developing countries to implement the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development, engage in agricultural cooperation with developed countries innovatively, assist in the formation of a new pattern of relationship on agricultural cooperation and promote agricultural sustainability in the world. The scheme proposed by China will actively promote the building of overseas demonstration industrial parks for agricultural cooperation and domestic cooperative experiment zones for agricultural opening-up and cooperate with Belt and Road countries on so many issues relating to making live worth living for the common man.
This involves, sharing agricultural technologies, experience and development modalities, joint plans and implement key projects. This will enhance comprehensive grain productivity in the region, science and technology cooperation and demonstration, joint prevention and control of animal and plant diseases and outbreaks, agricultural vertical integration, strengthening trade infrastructure, building the platform for agricultural experts to emerge, training and developing an IT application network for agriculture.
Speaking at the opening ceremony of the training in Abuja, Mr Wang Jun, Deputy Managing Director of CGCOC, said the training was aimed at Nigeria’s three widely-cultivated crops; rice, maize and sorghum.
The training focuses on cultivation techniques, breeding and seed production techniques and other related techniques, including the indoor technical training and onsite practice of soil and fertilizer science, disease and pest prevention and control, and storage technology. According to Jun, “Most of the trainers have been working in Nigeria for many years, and familiar with Nigeria’s agricultural climate and have rich experience in Nigerian agriculture as such the training will surely grant them the needed expertise”.
Xuan Zhongbo of Shandong Foreign Trade Vocational College said China had made great achievement in agriculture, and is willing to share its experience with other developing economies. In his words, “China is willing to share agricultural development experience unselfishly to transfer the traditional mode of production, improve added value of agricultural product, upgrade the competitiveness of agriculture and promote the development of agricultural technology and the growth of agricultural trade in Nigeria,”
The Deputy Director, International Cooperation Department at the Ministry of Budget and National Planning, Mr Simon Ahonsi Ileuma, expressed optimism that the training would significantly build the capacities of our public and private sector personnel across the country in the identified areas of agricultural pest diseases, grain storage and agricultural mechanization. In his words, “All these will have positive impact on the agricultural productivity while contributing to the per-capital real income and hence, improve the general economy,”.
Addressing the participants, the Director, Comprehensive African Agriculture Development Programme, Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Development, Baye Bungwon, noted that the training came at the right time when the government was diversifying the economy to agriculture and solid minerals. He stated that the training would go a long way in building the capacities of public and private sector personnel across the country in the areas of agricultural pests and diseases, grain storage, and mechanization.
“It is government desire that the training will enhance the capacity of agricultural workers who will serve as the required agents of change for a sector that is being repositioned through the Agriculture Promotion Policy and the Economic Recovery and Growth Plan to be private sector-driven,” the director said.
Bungwon disclosed that the FG was deepening the private sector-driven Agriculture Mechanization Framework strategies in partnership with local fabricators and manufacturer representatives.