Nigeria and the Brazilian Government have signed a $1.2 billion Memorandum of Understanding to boost agricultural modernisation in the country.
The credit facility provided by the Development Bank of Brazil would help support the Federal government’s drive to provide agricultural mechanisation and agro-processing centres across the country.
The Senior Special Assistant to President Muhammdu Buhari on Agriculture, Dr. Andrew Kwasari, who addressed newsmen in Abuja, explained that the loan was a bilateral agreement between Nigeria and the Brazilian Government, and would be guaranteed by the Islamic Development Bank and Islamic Corporation of Insurance for Export Credit.
The facility to be repaid in the next 15 years would create market-oriented private sector-driven service centers across the country to address the two twin issues of agricultural modernisation and agro-processing, he said.
He pointed out that “the Green Imperative Project (GIP) is a facility that will inject foreign direct investment of €995 million or $1.2 billion that has been structured financially to allow the government uses its bilateral negotiation and arrive at financing that is below three per cent interest rate and has a long gestation period of 15 years to repay.
The Director of Mechanisation in the Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Development, Abubakar Abdullahi, explained that GIP would be divided into two parts to accommodate different farmers.