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Tribune Online
CBN commits N69bn to boost palm oil production in Edo

IN a bid to bolster Nigeria’s oil palm sector for global competitiveness, the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) has invested N69 billion in the Edo State Oil Palm Programme (ESOPP), an agricultural intervention of the Edo State governor, Godwin Obaseki.

ESOPP, an innovative platform was initiated by the Edo State Government to harness the state’s rich oil palm heritage, in a bid to diversify the local economy, create jobs, and increase productivity in a sustainable manner.

Governor of the apex bank, Mr. Godwin Emefiele, who was present at the launch of the project in Benin City, dubbed Edo state the nation’s largest oil palm plantation. He indicated that the state was the safest haven for oil palm investment if Nigeria seeks to become a leading producer of the commodity in the globe.

In his remarks, “Edo State has the largest oil palm plantation in Nigeria and in reviving the oil palm industry in Nigeria Edo State is the best place to start. The CBN has disbursed about N30 billion to entrepreneurs in the oil sector in the last one year, and out of that amount, about N25 billion has been channeled to support companies into oil palm plantation in Edo State.”

Lauding Obaseki’s drive towards the development of the country’s oil palm sector, Emefiele revealed that the CBN would make available a N69 billion funding facility required for the ESOPP.

He said, “I want to thank Governor Godwin Obaseki for showing the required commitment and leadership in developing the oil palm sector in Nigeria. When we contemplated on reviving the oil palm sector in Nigeria, he was the only one that came out aggressively from the South-South and South-East governors and made available 120,000 hectares of land for this project.

On his part, Governor Obaseki stated that the ESOPP was part of his administration’s agenda to harness the state’s rich human and natural endowments, aimed at achieving economic growth and developing the wellbeing of the people.

Restating his commitment towards diversifying the state’s economy, he said “The focus on the oil palm sector alone can stimulate and drive the economy of any state as it has done to Malaysia and Indonesia. This programme will enable us to move from complaining and talking about what we have lost to concrete action towards regaining what has been lost.”

“Ours is to remove the critical risk in the oil palm sector by solving the biggest hindrances to plantation farm in Nigeria and making land available to farmers,” he emphasized.

Governor Obaseki also said his administration had provided about 120,000 hectares for oil palm development in the state, adding that the “Successful implementation of the programme will create over 600,000 more jobs as well as 25,000 hectares of forest cover. This programme will cost us about $600 million, which is approximately N200 billion. The money is there globally. It is never out of reach with investors on ground.”

He further disclosed that he was instituting the Edo State Oil Palm Programme implementation office, noting that consultants, surveyors, community relations experts would be trained to review and ensure that guidelines are strictly adhered.

CBN commits N69bn to boost palm oil production in Edo
Tribune Online

source https://tribuneonlineng.com/cbn-commits-n69bn-to-boost-palm-oil-production-in-edo/

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