By Emma Una, Calabar

Nigeria Incentive-Based Risk Sharing System in Agriculture, NIRSAL, is providing risk security for over 800 Agro businesses across the country to maximise food production for export and local consumption.

Mr Aliyu Abdurasheed, the Managing Director of NIRSAL, stated in Calabar at the weekend while launching the NIRSAL loan project at Gbaglo farms that small, medium and large scale agro-businesses are benefiting from the technical and financial support of the company to ensure that more capital is made available to farmers to maximum food production in the country.

“We are in the forefront in Agricultural support for farmers that is the reason we do not stay in Abuja, Lagos, or even Calabar but go right inside villages, communities, farms and Agric project locations to provide technical support and monitoring to give banks the needed information and confidence to extend loans to farmers loans for Agric businesses”

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He said the size of the Agric business notwithstanding whether small, medium, large scale, loan facilities are available with the NIRSAL guarantee at Union and Sterling Banks which are partnering with the company as long as the business owners have integrity, are committed to the business and are ready to make the business profitable

“With the ban on poultry by the federal government, it is our mandate to authenticate loans to poultry farmers by serving as collateral to banks for them to those who may not have all the requirements needed to secure loans in the poultry value chain so that there is enough poultry food for consumption because if there is not enough to meet the needs of the people there will be smuggling and stealing of our jobs”.

Mr Abdurasheed said NIRSAL monitors participating farmers through all the value chain beginning from the acquisition of inputs to the application at the right time and harvest to at the due time for storage to avoid waste and marketing to oblige the farmers the right prices for their products and the regular remittances to the banks to avoid default in payment of loans.

“Regardless of the location, size, type of business and status of the farmer, we have the capacity to .monitor and ensure regular compliance by those we guarantee and this takes the pain and risk from the banks and enables them to increase the loans”.

He called on small farmers to form what he calls GeoAgro Cooperatives to enable them to access loans from partnering banks and increase their earnings.

“Whether piggery, fishery, poultry, or even cocoa production those within a particular location can come together and form a Cooperatives and approach NIRSAL and we will work with them for a business plan acceptable to the banks and guarantee a loan for them- that is why we are here”

Speaking, Mr Victor Aderajju the Taj farm managing director said the loan will enable his company to do more in cocoa production for export to earn foreign exchange for the country.

Vanguard News Nigeria

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