The Governor of the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN), Mr. Godwin Emefiele has said that the revamped Nigeria Commodity Exchange (NCX) will commence operation by the fourth quarter of 2021.
Emefiele who spoke at the unveiling of the 2020 wet season harvest aggregation in Ekiti State, said the regulatory bank and its partners had committed the sum of N50 billion to the NCX.
“A vibrant commodity exchange will significantly enhance post-harvest handling, guarantee effective pricing for farmers, minimize the adverse effect of middlemen and commodity hoarders and ultimately transfer the gains from primary production to other nodes of the value chain,” the regulatory bank’s governor stated.
The Nigeria Commodity Exchange (NCX) was originally incorporated as a Stock Exchange on June 17, 1998. It commenced electronic trading in securities in May 2001 but was converted to a commodity Exchange on August 8, 2001, and brought under the supervision of the Federal Ministry of Commerce.
The CBN Governor said the sustainability of Nigeria’s current efforts in agricultural production can only be guaranteed if youths are attracted into agriculture as they remain the future of the country.
Emefiele enjoined Nigerian youths to embrace agriculture, noting that “They have the talent, energy, enthusiasm, technological adoption capacity and all the right drive to revolutionize agricultural production in Nigeria.
“We must meet them half-way to ensure that we provide the enabling environment to make agriculture attractive to them.
“The Central Bank of Nigeria stands ready to support youths that are willing to engage in agriculture,” the CBN stated.
The CBN Governor disclosed that a total of 3,107,890 farmers had been financed for the cultivation of 3,801,397 hectares across 21 commodities through 23 Participating Financial Institutions in the 36 States of the Federation and FCT, from the inception of the programme till date.
He added that under the 2020 wet season CBN-RIFAN partnership, the Bank had also financed 221,450 farmers for the cultivation of 221,450 hectares in 32 States.
Emefiele equally disclosed that the Bank planned a minimum of one million hectares of rice through a combination of RIFAN farmers and prime/private anchors for each planting season in 2021.
While also unveiling aggressive production plans for maize, wheat, soybeans, cassava, sorghum and cassava, he noted that the Bank’s backward integration drive with rice millers was also gaining momentum as the CBN intends to finance some millers to grow their own paddy during the current wet season.